Everyone, it seems, loves to watch A.R. Gurney's Sylvia, and everyone loves to produce it. Since 1995, the comedy about a boy and his dog, and his wife, and his midlife crisis as projected onto the dog, played by a cute young woman (Jessica Bedford) with shaggy blond curls, is a perennial on regional stages. This time, the lassie comes home to Ambler's Act II Playhouse, and why not? People love dogs, people love marriages weathering crisis, people love a happy ending.
I do not love Sylvia, though I do anthropomorphize and love dogs, and all the rest of it. Lines such as Sylvia's wide-eyed declaration, "Even when you hit me, I love you" always struck me as a lose-lose proposition. If they're truly the dog's/woman's sentiments, Sylvia - the play - is a misogynistic fantasy in fur; if they're husband Greg's (Greg Wood), it still might be, and identifying with him is a whole lot harder.