Romance is all well and good as a source of artistic fodder. But the love of a father or mother for their children is presumed to be unconditional. What happens when a parent receives a stunning challenge regarding their child or delivers a startling ultimatum to their offspring? Complications quickly ensue.
Frank Langella is doing a completely respectable King Lear at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's Harvey in William Shakespeare's tragedy of the same name. But wait. Better be more specific, since in discussing the daunting role, the actor is on record as saying he makes a very deliberate point of never giving the same performance twice.
Political dramas in the nation's capital usually partake more of Scandal or SNL than of Shakespeare, but we may need the Bard's unrivaled eye for profound family discord to tell the full story of the Cheneys right now. There are more than a few similarities between former Vice President Dick Cheney and King Lear: old men obsessed with the loss of power, attempting to pass their kingdoms on to ambitious daughters, each served by a loyal Fool for whom he cared to a pitiable degree. Cheney's even had the (White House) court jester's name of "Scooter." Like Lear, Dick Cheney seems destined to watch his family torn apart by his daughters' ambitions and beliefs -- and his own hubris.