Gag-a-minute black comedy is seriously good

Crissy Rock and Billy Pearce in Seriously Dead
Crissy Rock and Billy Pearce in Seriously Dead

Seriously Dead, Charter Theatre, Preston

If there was some temptation to believe this sort of theatre was, itself, seriously dead – this is the living proof otherwise.

If you enjoy the company of TV’s Mrs Brown and her Boys then you’ll lap up two hours with the Blenkinsopps and Blunderstones.

They are the folk caught up in a tale of missing stolen money, where characters from beyond the grave join in the search.

You can see some gags approaching a mile away; others have passed by years back; but there are quite enough new ones along in a minute. Rather like the No 17 buses that keep regularly sending characters to heaven! Co-stars Leah Bell and Crissy Rock have stirred their stock characters into the plot.

The two have recruited established character comedian Billy Pearce, stage and TV ‘straight’ man Frazer Hines, the rather-less-straight talents of stage actor Paul Dunn, and young newcomer Andrew Dawson, who doubles up in supporting roles.

Even near the end of an 11-date tour they appear to be having as much fun as anyone else in the house.

You could polish it all up of course, but that would be at rick of losing the inherent retro effect. Its target audience would not have it any other way.

David Upton