Crizards: This Means War | Edinburgh Fringe comedy review
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Crizards: This Means War

Edinburgh Fringe comedy review

Crizards, who enjoy reminding us that they’re ‘the lowest-energy double act in the UK’, are honing a tasty trade in genre spoofs. In last year’s Fringe debut, they played with Wild West movie tropes to great effect, and now they’re back with war themes in their sights.

Eddie Hare, who miraculously remains deadpan throughout, and his sketch partner Will Rowland spin an amusingly daft hour based on war stories told by Hare’s grandfather, prefaced with a fun line about how no facts have been checked. ‘We’re going to do it anyway,’ they sing, while strumming their guitars, correctly confident that we’re all happy to go along for the ride.

Hare takes on the role of the earnest Private Grandad, stoically keen to do his duty for his country, while cheeky-faced Rowland plays a cast of characters he meets along the way as he’s sent cross-country to deliver an important message.  These include Grandad’s happy-go-lucky chum from home (will he meet the same fate that these sort of fellows tend to in movies such as this?), Major Niceguy and a few comically accented individuals on the Continent.

There’s some enjoyably silly – and quick-change – prop work, and, for the most part, the pace is maintained by a smart balance of storytelling and funny songs. The European-style EDM number denouncing war is excellent, and one of several entertaining anachronisms; another involving a locket and a legacy is equally memorable.

Like Cowboys, This Means War is directed by Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Jordan Brooks and, for all its silliness, there’s a sincere underlying sympathy for what those young soldiers had to endure, and how silver screen portrayal of their sacrifices glossed over their pain.

The simpatico Hare and Rowland have an enviable instinct for what makes comedy sketches work. You’re unlikely to have a bad time in their company.

Review date: 9 Aug 2023
Reviewed by: Ashley Davies
Reviewed at: Pleasance Dome

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