ED FRINGE: Police Cops: The Musical – Assembly, Studio One, Edinburgh

Reviewer: Simon Topping

Creators: Zachary Hunt, Tom Roe and Nathan Parkinson

Co-Director: Matt Harrison

A musical multi-character farce which plays on all the 80’s US cop show tropes and delights the crowd with its unabashed silliness.

Rookie cop, Jimmy Johnson (Zachary Hunt), is trying to become “The Best Damn Police Cop Ever” to fulfil the promise he has made to his deceased sister, Billy. To become the best he must track down and incarcerate the notorious Mexican drug lord Herandez. To do this his police chief (Nathan Parkinson) suggests that he teams up with Harrison (Tom Roe), a disgraced grizzled veteran, to clean up the town by renegade means. Can they do it before they lose their badges?

Pastiche of bygone US Police drama is a well-worn path but one which Police Cops treads well in their portrayal. Visual and word play gags come thick and fast and this talented cast bring masses of high energy and zeal to this well executed performance.

The sight gags, with successive call-backs, are very pleasing and fun to watch, a highlight being an inventive bar scene involving a superbly silly table top gag, which is exquisitely choreographed. The script is well paced, with some small elements of improv, which are playful and well received by an eager crowd.

The music is fun and raucous, there’s even some wonderfully idiotic acrobatics. Lovers of Brooklyn Nine Nine, Team America: World Police or any of the Show that Goes Wrong plays, will lap this up.

The whole cast are great physical comedians. In particular Gabriella Leon (who among other things plays Jimmy’s love interest Rosa) has complete command of the stage with her extremely funny physicality.

The female roles seem slightly under-written compared with the male ones, but all parts are played exceptionally well.

The continuing trend for young male comedy performers to take their clothes off is a little tiring and is seen regularly in Police Cops. This neither heightens the performance or makes it funnier. However, on the whole the creative team here have made a fantastic romp of a show that comes at you at high velocity. The laughs are plentiful and it’s well worth a watch.

Runs at Assembly Studio one until august 29th 2022 (not the 27th)

The Reviews Hub Score

Fabulous Cop Farce

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