MOBY DICK
Piccadilly Theatre, London W1
Opened 17 March, 1992

Call me nauseated.

Some of my notes from this staggeringly awful show read as follows...

"First gag taken almost verbatim from 1947 play The Happiest Days Of Your Life. Tunes are less pop than Eurovision, and often degenerate into genre-by-numbers devoid of melody. Abysmal rhymes: 'think about it'/'turf accountant'; 'cast'/'left'."

"Tony Monopoly as headmistress [have I said it's set in a girls' school?], lacking the raw sex of Alistair Sim, Does Not Pass Go; Ishmael is a Su Pollard cub."

"Blunderbuss direction: never even a moment's restraint to power up the next major gag all spewed out without thought."

"The D of Pequod is now silent, since it's not easy to sing an uplifting line ending in '-od'."

"Act One's finale and Act Two's 3-D curtain-raiser (!) arise as naturally from what was once the plot as tits on a pope."

"Presumably whale oil is vital in the manufacture of Lycra; jailbaiting is taken to extremes in the cabin/rent-boy number s/he extols the joys of paedophilically lubricating the mates."

"Mackintosh will take a soaking."

"I'll vote for whichever party promises to outlaw it..."

...if it lasts until the election. St Godley's Academy should not just be closed down it should be firebombed (the school, not the theatre) into merciful oblivion. Stuff Art, Let's Dance? They got the first bit right.

Written for City Limits magazine.

Copyright Ian Shuttleworth; all rights reserved.

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