The title of Robert Scott Sullivan's new comedy suggests another tired wrinkle on the hot theme of men behaving badly. Beer for Breakfast, however, is a total delight: bright, breezy, and bawdy without being crude. Sullivan has a fine ear for dialogue, and the attractive cast is totally credible as confused 20-somethings trying to find their way after college. Under Jenn Bornstein's pitch-perfect direction, the play is inventive and fresh all the way through to its final punch line.
Rob Silver, Boomer, Rob Robinson, and Nick share an apartment on the Upper East Side, plus the fears of all college grads: careers, money, and relationships. Silver is a law school student who is uptight because his girlfriend of three years lives in Boston. Nick is a straight unemployed actor whose friend Amina wants him to go out on one date with a gay male fashion designer who can help her career. Ladies' man Boomer is satisfied with his girlfriend but can't decide to commit to only one woman. Robinson, a stoner, is, well, Robinson -- laid-back, carefree, living for the moment. All this takes place in set designer Bart Schobert's outrageously messy bachelor pad.
Nathan Bock as Robinson is a real discovery, with absolutely impeccable comic timing. He's a true stage natural. As the serious Silver, Ricardo Maldonado has a winning personality. Tom Olori as Nick handles his character's dilemma with aplomb. Topher Mikels is amusing as Boomer, an exhibitionist led around by his libido, though the actor is over the top at times. As the women in their lives, Justine Campbell-Elliott and Meg Bartholomay provide an interesting contrast, while Kenneth Hatlee is versatile in two supporting roles.
Presented by Talegate Productions
at the Producers' Club II, 616 Ninth Ave., NYC.
June 21-July 23. Wed.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.
(212) 868-4444 or www.smarttix.com.