The contrast I have outlined between the first and last parts of the play points to the ways in which the father's house and householding ideals are as extreme as the son's, but in the opposite direction: while Philolaches and his friends seek to dispense with the house entirely, Theopropides wants to overconstruct
it on an elaborate and bizarre plan.
This monstrous figure is strangely filled with historical reflection and gravitas, yet it is materially weightless and would he utterly unstable were it not for a couple of overconstructed
steel "crutches" keeping it upright.
Could someone who loved freedom above all believe in a fat, overconstructed
, historically corrupt institution like the Catholic Church?
Much of the overconstructed
dialogue in this part in particular feels either literary or trite: "It's called a shiva, but to me it was shiver because Dad's death made me tremble." Crystal's reflections on "the otherness" of grief, or the strained poetry of a sapling bending in the wind outside the hospital where his mother was recovering during his childhood, which had become a gnarled, old tree when she again was hospitalized years later, threaten to turn genuine grief into a prosaic shmaltzfest.
But rather than trying to deconstruct gender's intrinsic fallacy, Lucas deliberately overconstructs
it, baiting her audience with cliches.
Her "Men With Guns" marshals enough attitude, overconstructed
dialogue, posturing performances and bludgeoning ultraviolence to make Q.T.