There's comic gold to be had in this scenario, and occasionally Andron finds it with flair. More often than not, however, he squanders it with banal jokes and the unconvincing complications that arise as Joe becomes increasingly desperate to cover his trail of lies. Ultimately, "White's Lies" too often plays like an icky echo of sex farces from half a century ago.
Thankfully, director Bob Cline has at his disposal a cast that dives unabashedly into the script's silliness. Buckley makes Mrs. White humorously brittle, and Watkins has just the right combination of good looks, charm, and oiliness to make Joe a vaguely likable cad. And though Peter Scolari, as Joe's partner, uses his pitch-perfect timing and gift for physical comedy with gleeful abandon, it's Jimmy Ray Bennett who proves to be the show's scene-stealer, playing, among others, Joe's fey, put-upon junior associate. Rena Strober also proves memorable as all of Joe's jilted one-night stands. Their work enlivens Andron's tedious, forced script.
Presented by Aaron Grant, Jana Robbins, Jeremy Handelman, and Craig Haffner and Karl E. Held, with Sneaky Pete Productions, at New World Stages, 340 W. 50th St., NYC. May 6–June 13. Mon., Wed.–Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 2 and 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 and 7:30 p.m. (212) 239-6200, (800) 432-7250, or www.telecharge.com.