Review: Frankenstein

Frankenstein, 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, $15-$20. B Street Theatre, 2711 B Street; (916) 443-5300; Through March 20.
Rated 5.0

In an era where The Walking Dead is one of the most popular shows on television, it seems the perfect time to bring Frankenstein, literature’s most famous monster, back to life. The B Street Family Series presents this new adaptation by Jerry R. Montoya and it is simply excellent.

Set in the opulent living room of the home that Mary Shelley and husband Percy own in Lake Geneva, it is a dark and stormy night. To amuse themselves, the writers begin to discuss ghost stories. Mary proposes a contest to see who can write the best one, since the men feel that women are incapable of writing such a story (in actuality, Mary wrote Frankenstein when she was 18 and it was published when she was 20).

Excellent performances by all, particularly Megan Wicks as Mary, who narrates her story and holds her audience (on stage and in the audience) captive, and Michael RJ Campbell as Lord Byron, who becomes Dr. Frankenstein’s monster in the story.

Also noteworthy: Bryan Staggers as Percy Shelley, Stephanie Altholz as Clair Clairmont (Mary’s stepsister) and John Lamb as John Polidori, Lord Byron’s personal physician. The show is aided by Samantha Reno’s opulent set and Les Solomon’s dramatic lighting.

This is a play that has enough intelligent dialogue to appeal to adults and enough scary stuff to keep the kids entertained.