Troubled Broadway musical SPIDER-MAN: TURN OFF THE DARK failed to win over theatre critics following its first preview performance on Sunday (28Nov10), after the production was marred by technical glitches.
The show, directed by Julie Taymor and featuring music by U2's Bono and The Edge, has finally crawled to the stage for preview performances after suffering numerous setbacks as producers scrambled to solve a series of technical and safety issues.
The musical, which has cost more than $65 million (£43.3 million) to stage, was performed for the first time at the Foxwoods Theatre on Sunday, in front of reporters and 1,800 paying audience members.
And critics are already issuing harsh reviews ahead of the musical's official opening date next January (11), with one writer at the New York Post calling the production an "epic flop".
The reviewer wrote: "Not even Spider-Man could avert this disaster. Last night's opening preview of Broadway's most expensive production ever, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark was an epic flop as the $65 million show's high-tech gadgetry went completely awry amid a dull score and baffling script."
A New York Times critic detailed the night's technical glitches, adding: "The show stopped five times, mostly to fix technical problems, and Act I ended prematurely, with Spider-Man stuck dangling 10 feet above audience members."
A critic from the New York Daily News also claimed, "A fifth stop an hour into Act II caused some theatergoers to walk out," but was hesitant to write off the musical entirely, adding the audience "called it a surefire smash hit despite some kinks".