The Human Group's focus is on more than just childlike innocence, however; overwhelmingly it is on a sense of decency. They can talk about the mind/body problem and the dangers of capitalism just as easily as they can allude to The Wizard of Oz and dogs. The key to Geographical History’s success is its unflinching streak of compassion amidst the bleakness. More than combining Chekhov with plays that critique Chekhov, this is the strain that “weave[s] a thread between the theatre's past, present, and future.”
If it makes any difference, my personal experience was not all that far off from the general experiences of the two audiences of the plays. The two plays ran in similar sized theaters and had similar ticket prices. However, while the production I saw of Reflections was half empty, the Red Room was packed to the brim for Geographical History (granted, it was a Tuesday preview compared to an end-of-run Friday show.) The audience for Reflections was much older, and based on the swear words and scoffs I overheard in the audience, more or less just as disappointed as I was. The audience for Geographical History, packed mostly with friends and family, was laughing and gave a large ovation. The only way anyone could think that the Reflections was a bigger accomplishment than Geographical History was — geography: Reflections played in a theater that was geographically closer to Broadway. Other than that, the audience size, ticket prices, and expected revenue were about the same. What was vastly different was the quality of the art. That’s something that exists longer than any institution.