THE MEASURE OF A MILKMAN
Pleasance, Edinburgh
August, 2002

*** Slight but skilful monologue about a milkie

Andrew Mackay's solo piece is very much the kind of thing that's a staple of the Edinburgh Fringe, but he does it well.

Mackay, now best known as the Professor in his Oxford contemporary Al Murray's TV sitcom Time Gentlemen Please!, returns to the attic venue where he was so impressive several years ago in Dostoevsky's The Gambler. This time the matter is more straightforwardly comic: a fictionalised account of his time as a "home delivery operative" for Unigate a milkman.

There are various tangential bits of material which don't really go anywhere: Mackay's hermit-like home life and social awkwardness, his political sensibilities (the play is set around the 1997 general election)... they are taken up to a certain extent as we see his protagonist becoming a confident, predatory capitalist milkie, but the main comic narrative tends to drive out the stuff around the sides. But he has insight and ability, and almost succeeds in making one forget that on a hot afternoon the Pleasance Attic is the most airless venue in Edinburgh, bar none.

Written for divento.com

Copyright © Ian Shuttleworth; all rights reserved.

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