Returning from sell-out runs at Soho Theatre and Edinburgh Fringe 2017, the multi award-winning comedy trio The Pretend Men have carved themselves out a space as one of the must-see shows of this year’s Fringe with Police Cops.
After promising his dying brother that he’ll be the ‘best damned police cop ever’, Jimmy, fresh from the police academy and teamed with begrudging old cop partner Harrison, sets out to capture criminal mastermind Hernandez. This physical cop parody moves at breakneck speed, with joke after joke fired out as Zachary Hunt, Nathan Parkinson and Tom Turner present a cliché police tale as old as time – the avenging of a death, revenge, betrayal and a Mexican cat?
Every cliché is hit perfectly and, despite basing a story on storylines that have all been exhausted in the past, The Pretend Men still seem to present something completely new. Their connection with the audience is second to none, something which becomes apparent when the cast can no longer contain their laughter at themselves and the whole room joins in in roaring at the absurdity of the going-ons in front of them.
Armed with little but a few worn out props, the three man cast show incredible stamina; throwing themselves around the stage, the occasional surprise dance number and numerous costume changes all feature in a performance that, at times, feels almost cinematic. An hour flies by and it feels as though there hasn’t been a second when the room isn’t filled with laughter.
It’s good old-fashioned nonsense that is so addictive you’ll find yourself rushing to the box office afterwards for tickets to the sequel, Police Cops in Space. If you see one thing this Fringe, make it this.
Police Cops, Assembly George Square Studios, until 26 Aug, 6.35pm