Writer: Fred Lawless
Director: Howard Gray
Reviewer: Helen Patrick
Will Jimmy ever find true peace and quiet? Jimmy, who hates students, has moved from Liverpool (home of thousands of them) for ten months of the year, to the Antarctic in the hope of finding some relief from the endless stream of “young drunken fools.” Here he makes friends with Kylie and Jason the talking swearing pot smoking polar bears, penguins and even an arrogant snowman. Jimmy has been in the Antarctic for two years when something happens that turns his peaceful uneventful life upside down.
Michael Starke as Jimmy brings out his characteristic and unique blend of humour to the rôle, the laughter never stops and it is evident he gives everything from the off. Michael Ledwich as the horny talking polar bear Jason gives a side-splittingly funny portrayal, while Hayley Hampson as Daisy (the student) entertains with her outstanding vocals.
The cast play off each other brilliantly and arguably provides the best Christmas show ensemble seen at the Royal Court, when mistakes happen the cast just rôle with it, bringing more laughter and merriment but the show is stolen by Royal Court newcomer Michael Fletcher in the rôles of Bolokov and Kowalski, he is like a Duracell bunny… he just keeps on going and never stops its nothing short of phenomenal – keep an eye out for the moment he has to play both parts at the same time… a masterclass in comic delivery.
Richard Foxton’s set is a perfect playground for all the tomfoolery, icebergs, and igloos all feature and lighting and sound by Ian Scott and Kate Harvey help the madness even more. The onstage band under the supervision of Director (Howard Gray) and musical director Alex Smith add a great layer into the mix, always on stage and compliment the action perfectly.
Gray’s direction ensures that the show is pacey and as previously mentioned the funniest show in recent Royal Court history – credit must also be given to writer Fred Lawless who understands the scouse humour better than anyone. The laughter is guaranteed and one hopes that Scouse of the Antarctic brings in the crowds… not one for the kids, but certainly one that will bring a much needed dose of adult entertainment in the city this year.
Runs until 17th January 2015 | Photo: Dave Evans