Dear Evan Fansens
Having tried to introduce this musical to friends of mine and their first response was: “that’s the musical with those nervous gay kids, right?”
I must say I am disappointed that we, as a fandom, are leaving the impression that this is what Dear Evan Hansen is about. Let’s go over it again, shall we?
Dear Evan Hansen is a complex musical about Evan Hansen, a boy with anxiety. He gets wrapped up in lies he compulsively made trying to keep up the act he was friends with Connor Murphy, a boy with unstable mental health and anger issues who commit suicide.
He pulls in his friends Jared Kleinman and Alana Beck for help with the project he’s created, only to abandon them without even realizing it when he gets everything he wants. (I am not saying these two are innocent, but they were hurt by Evan.) (Also, do not erase their high functioning anxiety and insecurities!)
He has tricked the Murphy family and his community that he was close with Connor. While helping everyone connect, he is ripping apart himself and others with these lies. In the end, he hurt people. He hurt himself. He survived and is okay now. It’s not the closure we would want and expect from the end of a story, but this story is about life. Life doesn’t always have closure.
Zoe got hurt.
Jared got hurt.
Alana got hurt.
Heidi got hurt.
Mr. and Mrs. Murphy got hurt.
Connor got hurt.
Hurt and mental illness. This is the story. Don’t erase it. Learn from it, instead.
I am not saying that this is all the story is and that shipping anything in it is wrong. I MYSELF SHIP STUFF! I just want the message to be seen. This post highlights the dark and painful parts of Dear Evan Hansen.
I am not saying the show is not happy.
It really can be. It really is.
Evan created a place where people could learn they are not alone! Alana and Jared were part of it! The Murphy’s healed.
Everyone healed, as well as they got hurt.
Just because I say one thing, doesn’t mean I cancel out the other. They coexist.
Thank you for listening.