Monty Python's Spamalot...
Last night Stuart, Paul, Ian and I went to see Monty Python's Spamalot at the Palace Theatre in London's glitzy West End.
It was bit like going to see a late night Rocky Horror Picture Show screening; there was Tim Curry on there on stage, we had people dressed as Monty Python character's sitting behind us (a knight, a man in a white rabbit suit, a peasant etc) and many of the audience shouted out the lines of the more famous sketches before the actors did. It all had the feeling of a (very expensive) end of term show. With drunks in the audience. A sort of pantomime.
But don't get me wrong. It was fun. Fun and funny. Silly, fun and funny. But it wasn't quite the brilliance we had hoped for. For example some of the songs didn't travel too well from New York (You Won't Succeed On Broadway with the lyric changed to West End jarred a bit and the rather bizarre song called something like Get a Jew was a little lost on a UK audience I fear). And rewriting the script to include (un)cultural asides about Jade Goody will soon wear thin I suspect.
But having said all of that it is a rather fun piss take of all the musicals you've ever seen - with some oblique and some not so oblique references to Andrew Lloyd Weber, West Side Story, Camelot, Fiddler On The Roof, Les Miserables etc. And the Monty Python humour does shine through if some of the targets are a little broad.
Now if it hadn't been for the inherent sexism of the Python's original material (did they actually write any parts for women that weren't just big bosomed non-speaking roles?) I'd have said it was a fun night out for all to enjoy. Sadly even having a 'gay element' couldn't quite save it from the PC crowd’s frown.
But we did laugh though. A lot. And it will no doubt run and run. As they say (and sing at the beginning of Act