“0% nutrition and 100% joy” (William Knowelden)
Everything about this show is catered for a 10.30am audience. The short and snappy structure of the hour, made up five different short plays, is the perfect start to a day at the Fringe festival. It would be wrong not to mention the warm greetings given by the production team holding coffee, strawberries and soft but rather dry croissants. This greeting, however is the most innovative and memorable aspect of the show. None of the plays push any boundaries. They all play it very safe, which makes sense when you gaze around at an older crowd of Fringe-goers grumbling about the lack of space in the theatre.
Each play is well acted, well written and well balanced, and the crowd laugh and smile joyfully despite the somewhat cliche jokes. The first play follows a couple that are having problems in the bedroom so begin to practice role play in the street. When the somewhat obvious twist comes at the end, they exit the stage in a high pitched argument that is uncomfortably unfunny.
The second play Rebrand by Aileen Quinn & James Quinn, is the saving grace of the show. It combines light humour with themes of gender, free speech and nationalism. The audience love it. It takes place in a boardroom of spin doctors trying to rebrand war to make it appealing to the younger generation – a generation embodied by a gum chewing ‘millennial’ who stares at her phone the whole time.
The final three plays are all about love, and lack the finesse and wit of Rebrand. I Do by William Knowelden has a tight structure and a great script, it’s just a shame that is brought down by the other plays surrounding it. Overall, the show is pleasant viewing and inoffensive but resonates mainly with an older audience who enjoy rather dated comedy.
Words: Madeleine Sanders
The Big ‘Bite Size’ Breakfast Show, Pleasance Dome, Aug 16-28 (not 22), 10.30am