NewsRevue – (rating 5/5)
In the best traditions of satire no one in the public eye is safe from the attentions of the NewsRevue team. This is sketch comedy kept fresh by the use of energetic, young talent and excellent writing. As a Fringe stalwart for many years, it is good to see that NewsRevue can still pack a punch.
The usual suspects, Theresa May and the Trumps (both Donald and Melania) are targets in this fast-paced show. It starts darkly, although the apocalyptic vision appears to be on hold since Trump’s meeting with North Korea. Corbyn, Merkel, Sturgeon, Putin and others are all lampooned mercilessly. It ends with a glitzy ‘tribute’ to all the Harvey Weinsteins in Hollywood.
The speed is breathtaking, driven along with pace and vigour by an onstage musical director. The cast are outstanding, both individually and in their fine, harmonised ensemble singing. This means that the wordplay – and particularly the punchlines – are not lost to the audience. All four (Susannah Austin, Philippa Carson, Jacob Jackson and Jack Mosedale) have stand out moments. Mosedale, in particular, uses his ‘lost puppy’ looks to great effect but all of them are talents to watch for in the future.
As well as beautifully delivered songs there are spoken sketches too (you will never look at a take-out cup of coffee in the same way again). Inevitably there are a couple that fall a bit flat. This is sometimes through lack of topicality (the World Cup is long gone) but a look from the cast makes that a gag in itself.
This is an excellent, ‘traditional’ sketch show and none the worse for that. Great writing and sparkling performances make for an hour of top class sketch comedy delivered at breakneck speed.
Underbelly, until August 27