It took about a day of beatification after Steve Jobs death before the backlash started in. Well, less than a day in Gawker’s case. But playwright Mike Daisey is betting that the stasis is somewhere in between.
His controversial play, “The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs,” begins previews today at the Public Theater, less than a week after Mr. Jobs’s death. Although some lines in the monologue have been changed to reflect his passing, as MarketWatch reports, it won’t be pulling any punches about what Mr. Daisey describes as Apple’s inhumane manufacturing, based on his trip to the Foxconn plant, the site of multiple worker suicides, in Shenzhen, China.
The play also covers the visionary technologist’s drive for perfection and knack for selling the public stuff they didn’t know they wanted. But if statements about Apple’s notorious walled garden like “Today there is no tech company that looks more like the Big Brother from Apple’s iconic 1984 commercial than Apple itself, a testament to how quickly power can corrupt,” strike some as too soon, Mr. Daisey thinks Mr. Jobs would have approved. In an op-ed in Friday’s Times, Mr. Daisey wrote:
“His impatience with fools was legendary, and the amount of hagiography now being ladled onto his life with abandon would undoubtedly set his teeth on edge.”