Creepy Boys | Edinburgh Fringe comedy review
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Creepy Boys

Edinburgh Fringe comedy review

The Creepy Boys introduce themselves by way of a jaunty old-school vaudevillian number:’ Hooray for the Creepy Boys! Make way for the Creepy Boys!’ Though that’s the only old-fashioned thing about this manic, themed sketch show based on clowning and playful audience involvement.

The duo are Canadians SE Grummett (aka Grumms) and Sam Kruger – a real-life couple playing ‘identical’ twin brothers celebrating their 13th birthday party in 2004. Whether this is the healthiest way to explore a loving relationship is a matter for their therapists, but it’s a good age for the duo to pick. The hormone-addled adolescent energy is the perfect fit for these irrepressible, anarchic show-offs, enabling them to instantly switch from excitable to bickering to sulking. It also plays into a juvenile sense of humour that finds most bodily functions funny. 

And as if to live up to their title, the Creepy Boys also like dabbling in the occult, and early on, the audience are invited to pledge their soul to the Devil. Later, they’ll try to use Satanic forces to summon up Green Goblin-era Willem Defoe.
Vowing allegiance to the Dark Lord Beelzebub is the first of many audience interactions, usually en masse, joining in with the songs and playing party games, such as Truth Or Dare, which allows the duo to flex some improv muscles. And lest things get out of hand, the unseen babysitter Sharon is always on hand to poop their party. HuHuHuHuuu, we said ‘poop’.

The pair are versatile, lively performers who infect the audience with their quirky playfulness. They’re forever frolicking around Summerhall’s disused Victorian surgery demonstration room – the perfectly peculiar venue for this show – and many punchlines come with a celebratory song and dance, sometimes even with jazz hands.

Their landmark birthday causes them to reminisce all the way back to the womb, with a deliciously dark sketch – while the graphic, grotesque birth scene will live in your head for a while. It’s not the only section in dubious taste: elsewhere, they yadda-yadda-yadda their way through some especially problematic thoughts. But the offence makes it funny.

The upbeat energy is appealing and it’s great fun, although the fast-paced show can also be a bit of a cacophony. There’s so much going on, much of it only tangentially connected, that everything risks collapsing under all the noise.

A sudden change of pace comes when we fast-forward to their 31st birthday to catch up with their separate adult lives. Maybe we needed a breather from the mania, but this section drags… though it does reinforce the message that the pair are better together, whether by accident or not.

‘Message’ might be a bit of strong word for it, mind, given that this show is more like an hour playing party games with horny, ADD kids with a destructive streak, fired up on sugary snacks. It’s a wild celebration of being a teenager, where everything is new and exciting, even devil worship. May a bit of all of us remain forever 13.

Review date: 17 Aug 2023
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett
Reviewed at: Summerhall

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