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Penny Dreadfuls

Note: This review is from 2010

Review by Julia Chamberlain

This is colossal fun and it’s great to see a show where even a modest outlay and some thought has been given to making this sketch show look slick, polished and vibrant, starting with yellow Japanese banners dropping upstage and three good looking boys accessorised in yellow racing around artfully decorated, multiple use blocks as the music pumps away.

Opening with a high-energy, non-verbal Britain’s Got Talent spoof of sultry posturing, swaggering and underachieving physical effort was a fabulous bum settler, focusing the audience, introducing the three players and letting us relax, knowing they were funny right from the word go.

Sketches deal in stereotypes for the sake of quickly establishing character,  so the stage is populated with a macho aggressive northern rally driver, a Spanish engineer, piratical smugglers, a gormless simpleton child, uptight stepdad and cowed mother and so many more.  Perhaps the greatest howling laughter was provoked by a Twilight parody, all moody pouting, flouncing and saucer-eyed devotion. 

It’s an hour that flashes past, there’s not one moment that flags. The physical comedy complements the verbal sparring to put this show at the top of its class

Review date: 15 Aug 2010
Reviewed by: Julia Chamberlain

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