I have a question for all my fellow miserables. If you're trying to introduce someone to the musical who is mildly interested, what means would you choose?
The 2012 film (which I have not seen yet)? I would think it might be a bit graphic and scare people away. And--how can I put this nicely--I have the soundtrack and the singing is not the best I've heard. But it does tell the whole story.
The 10th anniversary concert is my favorite overall cast (I mean, Colm Wilkinson as Valjean. Phillip Quast as Javert. How can you argue with that?) but Fantine's wig is terrifying and it (the concert, not the wig) leaves out huge chunks of the plot. *Huge* chunks.
And then there's this:
I do love the 25th concert, HOWEVER (and this is a big however), there's one teeny tiny gaping hole. It has a great cast, great costumes, even a decent set, but it also has this.
But the rest of the cast is great (Karimloo, people!) and it includes a whole lot more of the recitative bits than the 10th. So does the Jonas factor o'ershadow the rest as to make it unusable for introductions?
I've heard it suggested that someone read the book or listen to the 1988 recording all the way through. That sounds great, but they both require quite a bit more than the two or three hours that my hypothetical semi-interested person is willing to apply themselves to.
So, which one would you choose? Or do you have another idea?
*well, almost the entire book. After Hugo duped me into reading 200+ pages of Waterloo and the convent, I grew more careful. I skipped the sewers and Parisian slang.