Men Are From Mars, Musicals Are From Vegas

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For those of you living on another planet, Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus attempts to explain the classic disconnect between the sexes with the help of a little science fiction.

As the metaphor goes, men come from Mars, where the inhabitants are goal-oriented and need respect. When faced with stress, they withdraw into a cave to heal in silence.

Women are native to Venus, where they value communication and beauty. They need to be cherished.

When the Martians and Venusians meet, it’s true love. But they travel to Earth and soon forget their origins. Instead of appreciating their differences, they try to change one another. The result: unhappiness, divorce, and, presumably, a lifetime of searching bookstores for instant solutions.

Some call it psychobabble. Feminists grouse that Gray only reinforces traditional sex roles. But millions swear by it. Gray has trained more than 500 Mars and Venus counselors to counsel the lovelorn worldwide, and he now stands as a one-man media empire, with a syndicated column in more than 200 newspapers.

The book has spawned such offspring as Mars And Venus on a Date, Mars and Venus in Love, Mars and Venus Starting Over, and Mars and Venus Together Forever.

In mid-October, Gray will spin off his franchise into a syndicated weekday TV show hosted by Cybill Shepherd and available in many markets on NBC stations. Gray will appear only occasionally, but his love philosophy will be omnipresent.

“I don’t worry about overexposure,” he says. “I believe in doing what I love, and the rest will take care of itself.”

Sorry Guys, No Cave

The musical tracks the lives of five couples, some young, some old. Seniors Harry and Bea recount struggling through 25 years of marriage in a ditty called “Suppress Yourself.”

Frances and Rex represent a Mars-Venus role reversal. She is incommunicative. He just wants to be held. New Age fad lovers Paul and Sylvia have steeped their herbal teas with all the right infusions. But they, too, can’t get it right. And youngsters Mitzi and DuPree have a great thing going physically, but they have a lot to learn.