Expect the Unexpected

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All the Way with Bryan Cranston

Bryan Cranston is a tour de force on Broadway in All the Way.

Bryan Cranston is a tour de force on Broadway in All the Way.

Merriam-Webster defines “tour de force” as a feat or display of strength, skill or ingenuity. Next to that definition, there should be a picture of Bryan Cranston.

He is giving a tour de force performance on Broadway right now in the play All the Way, where he portrays President Lyndon Johnson. It’s a drama based on history and real events. Lest you think this is a snoozefest, think again.

While the material in and of itself is engaging, it’s Mr. Cranston’s performance as the “accidental” president who took the oath of office on an airplane following the death of John F. Kennedy, that puts this show in the stratosphere.

I left the theater with only one word in mind. “Wow.”

Trailer for All the Way:

Thanks to Mr. Cranston, the play is three hours of non-stop energy and electricity. He gives everything he has portraying a troubled president determined to serve another term in office — at all costs.

Morghan and Katie at All the Way. The show sings to fans of all ages.

Morghan and Katie at All the Way. The show sings to fans of all ages.

Mr. Cranston is a true chameleon. Hilarious as wacky dad Hal in Malcolm in the Middle, then eerily sinister as good guy Walter White turned drug lord Heisenberg in Breaking Bad, he has now conquered Broadway.

Breaking Bad fans might recognize a little bit of both Walter White and Heisenberg at times in Mr. Cranston’s performance. He spares no expense with his emotions and puts everything he has out there. The result is nothing short of extraordinary. A rare moment in theater when you recognize true greatness and realize you are seeing something very special.

Just as in his TV shows, Mr. Cranston is surrounded by a terrific cast in All the Way. You may recognize Michael McKean (Laverne & Shirley, This is Spinal Tap),  Ethan Phillips (Neelix in Star Trek: Voyager), and John McMartin (Anything Goes, Sweet Charity, All the President’s Men and so much more).

You probably won’t recognize other fine actors in the cast such as Brandon J. Dirden, who does an uncanny Martin Luther King, Jr. He is an up and comer, be on the lookout for him in things to come.

If you are a Bryan Cranston/Breaking Bad fan, I highly urge you to go to New York and catch All the Way now on Broadway. Cancel your other vacation plans. This is something you will never forget and will remember for a lifetime. The show has a strictly limited run, and ends June 29, 2014. So get your tickets now and just go.

When Mr. Cranston wins his first Tony, for his Broadway debut no less, you will wish someone had told you how amazing his performance was so you could have experienced it. Consider that wish granted.

Bryan Cranston as LBJ, with Brandon J. Dirden who is spot on as Martin Luther King, Jr. in All the Way.

Bryan Cranston as LBJ, with Brandon J. Dirden who is spot on as Martin Luther King, Jr. in All the Way.


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8 thoughts on “All the Way with Bryan Cranston

  1. Totally LOVE Bryan Cranston… and I’ve only seen him in Breaking Bad! ❤
    I've written a post on my blog on BB, if you wish to have a look. 🙂

    • Thanks so much for your comment. I read your fun blog and I am awed at the amazing ability Breaking Bad had to cross generations. That is the mark of success and greatness. When someone like you young bloggers can enjoy something as passionately as an old biddy like me that’s saying something. I had the pleasure to interview Giancarlo Esposito (Gus) right after his final episode aired and it was the thrill of a lifetime. He is so gentle and down to earth, nothing at all like his character. I don’t know where you live, but if you have the chance to visit New York in the next couple months you would be in for a real treat if you could see Bryan Cranston in All the Way. The one word to sum up his performance is “electric.” When the last episode of Breaking Bad aired I went through serious withdrawal. It was like losing a friend. I bought a collection of the whole series on Blu Ray (the one in the barrel) so I’ll always have it. I don’t know if there’ll ever be another show as all around great as Breaking Bad. But I’m so glad we could all share this experience together. We’re lucky.

  2. I took a whirlwind weekend trip from Tulsa, OK to see “All the Way” on April 25th. It was fantastic. The three hours felt more like 45 minutes. An incredible performance by the entire cast, especially Bryan Cranston.

    • Wow, Tammy, I admire your dedication! So glad you got to see this show with Bryan Cranston. It wouldn’t be the same without him. The good news is the playwright is writing another play about Lyndon Johnson — focusing on his struggles with the Vietnam War. So fingers crossed, we’ll get to see him again in the role. The Tony award nominations are going to be announced today. I’ll be blogging about it afterwards.

  3. Pingback: Tony nominations: Déjà vu all over again | Expect the Unexpected

  4. OMG, did you purchase the barrel collection?? Wish I could too… but it’s way too expensive. Wow, did you actually had the chance to interview Giancarlo Esposito? How lucky… You’re a journalist then, I suppose?
    I’m 29 and I’m from Italy and I totally LOVE Bryan Cranston. I’m looking forward to going to the cinema when Godzilla’s out but it won’t be the same… 🙂 I also perfectly understand what you mean when you talk about the end of the show being like losing a friend. That’s exactly how I’ve been feeling lately…
    I’d love to go see him act in All the way, I heard he’s amazing in it, but I can’t go.

    • Yes, I did buy the barrel collection, for my husband for Christmas. It was all for him. That’s my story anyway and I’m sticking to it. And I am a journalist, I write for a Connecticut newspaper. I knew Giancarlo Esposito lived in the area so I called him and he agreed to an interview. What a wonderful man. Below, me and “Gus.”

      <img src=" photo Patty-Giancarlo288.jpg

  5. Pingback: Bryan Cranston’s coming back to the small screen | Expect the Unexpected

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