Todd Solondz wrote and directed the movies Happiness and Welcome To The Dollhouse. His first foray into playwriting (and directing theater) is the wonderful Emma And Max, now playing at The Flea Theater downtown.

Expect very Todd Solondz-y vibes during this show, where one of the themes is the audience being asked to linger uncomfortably with the thickness of the dark situation on the stage. There are no shortage of these moments, but they are countered nicely by lots of dark humor that will often cause you to literally LOL.

The main idea? A rich white yuppie couple fires their nanny and extreme guilt ensues. There’s more to the story, though, but, well…Todd Solondz is the best person to handle telling it to you.

Photos: Joan Marcus

Special shoutout to the hilarious Ilana Becker, who you will want to now see in everything she’ll ever be in after you see her in this perfectly ridiculous role.

Runs through November 11.