I've been reading so much Albee, and then today I picked up one of Mamet's most recent plays: Boston Marriage. And it might as well have been written by Albee. It is identical in style to an Albee play and just as hysterical (I mean the word literally, not euphemistically.) It's quite a surprising comedy. Marriage is more ridiculous than Albee is and the subject matter isn't quite up his alley, but the resemblance is really uncanny.
Albee would've had more characters, but, then, he tends toward the grandiose and Mamet toward the simple.
I'm liking Mamet these days. I recently saw his Romance, which I found quite good, if a little empty, and I read his Three Uses of the Knife a month or so ago and found it an encouraging and insightful treatise on dramatic performance. Boston Marriage makes me like him even more. And for those who say he can't write women, well... they're still right, but Mamet's visions of womanhood might be just as intriguing as ones with more resemblance to the real thing. I would say the same thing about his visions of gay men: they're not accurate, but they do fascinate.