The "G.R." of the play's title stands for "Graves Registration"—the point where the bodies of Vietnam combat victims are brought for processing before burial. Joining the unit involved in tending to this gruesome duty is Micah Broadstreet, a New England aristocrat, and Ivy League graduate, recently drafted. Although it seems unlikely that Micah will be accepted in a unit comprised of two blacks, a Puerto Rican, a Greek-American and a hillbilly, he soon joins them in pot smoking and, more important, survives a hellish fire-fight in which he kills for the first time. But the more he fits into the life of the unit, the more his values erode. His increasingly explicit letters to his mother undoubtedly contribute to the heart attack which ends her life, and he confesses, with some shame, to having experienced sexual pleasure in the act of killing. In the end, through Micah and the others, the playwright captures the real horror of Vietnam—the insidious way in which it robbed human life of its dignity and dimension, and led decent young men to commit acts that, in another time and place, would have filled them with remorse and horror.
A powerful, lacerating and important play, which conveys, with chilling effect, the true nature of the dehumanizing war in Vietnam. Produced initially by the renowned Phoenix Theatre, in New York, and then presented on Broadway. "…an indelible theatrical experience." —The Hollywood Reporter. "It's an effective, moving drama about an American soldier who learns how to attain inner peace while learning how to make war…" —Variety. "…powerful, moving, honest and firsthand play." —Newsweek.