ComedyEdinburgh Festival FringeEdinburgh Fringe 2016ReviewScotland

Nick Hall: Szgrabble – T-Bar, Edinburgh

Reviewer: R G Balgray

Imagine a Bond movie as a one-man show through the medium of slapstick mime, and you’re halfway towards Nick Hall’s show at T-Bar in the Cowgate. Add a more-than-ridiculous cod Cold War narrative channelling the famous Chess Wars through Scrabble. Then season with the “Stationery” chapter of office jokes of the past, and the recipe is complete.

Of course, there’s more to it than that. Nick starts off with the dial at “Manic” and rarely goes below “Frenetic” (which is probably what you’d need for a one-man-Bond without the pictures). So there are times when it seems a bit sweaty and more tightly-wound than the spring on a jammed stapler. However, the range of funny voices and split-split narratives are – mostly – managed consistently, even the worst jokes are cajoled into raising a smile, and some of the action sequences – chases, the odd murder or five – are pretty funny. Trying to maintain a stream of ad-libs with the audience just might be overegging the pudding, but hey, the lad’s working his socks off. So credit where it’s due – there’s plenty here to raise a giggle with his youthful audience.

Runs until 27 August 2016

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The Reviews Hub - Scotland

The Scotland team is under the editorship of Lauren Humphreys. The Reviews Hub was set up in 2007. We aim to review all professional types of theatre, whether that be Commercial, Repertory or Fringe as well as Comedy, Music, Gigs etc.

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