In each case, he has tailored the archetypal tale of an abandoned lover’s grisly vengeance to suit the city in which it is performed. Thus “Mojada” takes place amid a gentrifying Corona, invaded by New York hipsters in search of available real estate.
Not that its central character knows anything about this fast-changing neighborhood, other than what she hears from the few people she ever talks to. The most inspired notion of “Mojada” is that this 21st-century Medea, wrenched from the only home she ever knew, is now incapable of inhabiting the wider world. She’s a woman without a country, destined to live in limbo.
Directed by Chay Yew, Mr. Alfaro’s frequent collaborator, “Mojada” finds surprising vitality within the stasis of its doomed heroine’s existence. Medea, a gifted seamstress who does cash-only contract work making exquisite clothes for a pittance, may never leave her tiny, self-contained realm of exile. (Arnulfo Maldonado’s lovingly detailed backyard set — lighted by David Weiner, with sound by Mikhail Fiksel — suggests a snug urban microcosm on the edge of chaos.)
But the world nonetheless comes to her, in a vibrant rush of gossip and anecdotes. The news bearers include Medea’s lover, Jason (Alex Hernandez, handsome enough to kill for), their young son, Acan (Benjamin Luis McCracken); and, most entertainingly, her longtime family servant, Tita (the enjoyably earthy Socorro Santiago), and a buoyant street cart vendor, Luisa (Vanessa Aspillaga, in a scene-stealing performance), who goes by her “hipster name” Lulu.
“Mojada,” which roughly translates to a derogatory term for Mexican immigrants, features long and all-too-topical monologues in which Medea describes her harrowing journey from Mexico. And its plot follows, almost to a fault, the bloody, fatalistic story laid down by Euripides in his “Medea,” from the fifth century B.C.