Paddy Chayefsky Richard Watts, Jr. - Essay

Richard Watts, Jr.

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

The first thing to be said of "Gideon" is that it has distinction and a haunting fascination…. Paddy Chayefsky's dramatization of the Old Testament story … combines bold imagination, intensity of searching contemplation of the relationship between God and man, and a delightful vein of humor. Its first act is completely successful. But I can't help feeling that, in the second half, Mr. Chayefsky courageously plunges in beyond his depth….

Mr. Chayefsky's conception is that Gideon, who vanquished the Midianites with his small army, was a gentle and modest dolt of a man chosen by God to lead the people of Israel to victory because his weakness and inadequacy made his unexpected triumph the clearest...

(The entire section is 466 words.)