Theater: Laughter in the Dark

Art Buchwald's first play, Sheep on the Runway, is a cartoon allegory. Flush with military hardware but low on brainpower, a group of bumbling, do-good-ing, fast-talking Americans lead a small, neutral Himalayan nation in Asia into a deadly heap of trouble. The difficulty with themes like this is that a playgoer is not quite sure whether he is experiencing the shock or the drone of recognition. An audience should never know as much as or more about a play than the playwright does.

Since Buchwald never opts to go all out for satire or all out for farce, the play seems to...

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