Major Spoiler Ahead:
If there was anything that had Broadway audiences gasping, keeping secrets from friends, and filling the Music Box Theatre for nearly three years, it was the big reveal Sleuth had in store for them midway through Act Two—that the character of Inspector Doppler is in actuality Milo (whom we assume to be gone for good) in disguise.
To do so, the original Broadway production conceived and promoted an ingenious bit of fiction, that there were not two but five actors in the cast, giving each actor or “actor” his own program bio and headshot.
Little Fish tips Shaffer’s hand by publicizing Sleuth as a two-hander, and though the production’s three fictitious actors do get listed in the cast of characters, none is given headshot or bio in the program, a sure suggestion that something fishy (no pun intended) is going on.
Add to this Doppler’s obviously fake beard and improbable body padding (an audience member behind me remarked aloud immediately upon the character’s entrance, “It’s the same actor”) and despite Bryson Jones Allman’s remarkable performance (one nothing at all like his Milo), we are not fooled, nor can we believe that Andrew would be, all of which raises the question of whether Sleuth can fully succeed in a tiny blackbox whose front row seats are within tripping distance of the actors and where stage disguises can be easily recognized as such.