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Saturday, May 29, 2021

Gary Coleman is now dead, but his “Avenue Q” character lives on:

“Avenue Q,” which won the Tony Award for best musical in 2004, as well as Tonys for [writer Jeff] Whitty and the composers, Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, has included a character called Gary Coleman since its debut.

Introduced in the show’s opening number, “It Sucks to Be Me,” the character (who is played by a woman) identifies himself as the former child star who “made a lot of money that got stolen by my folks.”

Now he works as the superintendent in the tenement where the show’s puppet and human characters live, and he often reminds them that, as bad as their lives may seem, his is much worse. (“Try having people stopping you to ask you, ‘What’choo talkin’ ’bout, Willis?’ ” he sings. “It gets old.”)

After some debate and a little tweaking, this character will remain on the stage. In pop-cultural terms, maybe that’s more of a sign of respect for the deceased. It’s certainly a case of diff’rent strokes for different folks.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 05/29/2010 04:56pm
Category: Celebrity, New Yorkin', Pop Culture, TV
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