Where to start? There are so many big things wrong with the retooled Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark that it feels only sporting to mention the positives first.
Which won't take long. The jaw-dropping aerial stunts, especially in the closing 20-30 minutes, work perfectly (all technical glitches have evidently been solved), eliciting the wide-eyed wonder of the circus and the best comic-book action movies. The justly celebrated sets, supplemented by witty and at times immersive projections, practically burst with creativity, zooming from perspective to perspective, cityscape to cityscape, setting to setting, cleverly and with evocative urban grandeur.
Hmm...what else? Well, Patrick Page has fun as the Green Goblin towards the end. There are a few nice duet-vocal moments between leads Reeve Carney and Jennifer Damiano. In a couple of spots, the score, by U2's Bono and The Edge, hits a high, if pointless, peak, also during the second act.
That's all the juice I can squeeze out of this sad husk of a show. The music, for the most part, ranges from colorless to awful. (An example of the latter: I really want back the five minutes of my life lost to a number called "Sinistereo.") The forgettable lyrics are only marginally better than the ham-handed, amateurish dialogue, which isn't even worthy of a bad B-movie, resembling instead what you might find in an original middle school musical.
Even the amusing lines are spoiled. "You know, when Ben and I graduated high school," Peter Parker's sweet Aunt May tells Peter and Mary Jane suggestively upon their own graduation, "we got married." Funny and cute, but then, after a beat, as if we didn't take her meaning, it's slammed home: "Right away!" Much of the script is similarly insulting to the audience's intelligence.