Posts Tagged ‘Matthew Cottle’

Well, panto season has come early. There are some components of that seasonal fare missing, but that’s the best the way to describe this satirical romp, cheeky, broad & bawdy, somewhat appropriately occupying The Prince of Wales Theatre until the religious, rather than royal, satire The Book of Mormon comes back. I thought it was great fun, provided you’re not a royalist or a theatrical snob.

The premise is that the Queen has died, Charles ascends the throne and using a mistake in the drafting of an act of parliament becomes an absolute monarch. Camilla as the wicked witch of course, the power behind the throne. They turn Britain into a feudal state, which triggers Wills & Kate (on a world tour to keep them out of mischief) to recruit Harry & Meghan (putting their animosity behind them), to challenge Charles. The sub-plot involving Andrew, Fergie, Beatrice & Eugenie is very much as it appears to be today, back in the real world!

I loved the fact Prince Edward (a terrific Matthew Cottle) plays a large number of roles, none of them himself; Edward did have a brief career in the theatre world, after all. A favourite of mine, Sophie-Louise Dan, is brilliant as Fergie. Harry Enfield reprises his superb TV performance as Charles. The actors playing the other seven principal roles are all very good. Princess Anne has been spared characterisation, though I’m not entirely sure why. In addition to Prince Edward’s direct-to-audience engagement, the curtain calls provide a brilliant opportunity to break the fourth wall again.

It might not be written about decades into the future, but as a funny & uplifting show for now, it ticks almost all of the boxes. Great fun.

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