John Godber’s, vulgar 80’s comedy has been revived at the Whitehall theatre for a limited season. However, I must say that I have mixed feelings about this play, as it is full of toilet humour that would probably be more palatable after a few pints of bitter!
The play explores the weekend nightlife in an urban city, particularly at a local disco. The four actors play many parts including bouncers, lacquered girls dancing round their handbags, and lager lads looking to pull.
Maybe I’m getting a little too old, but I found the play offensive in parts, what with all the farting, peeing, gutter language, and snot! The play is mainly an observation of how young men and woman behave on a Saturday night, or rather how badly and disgustingly they behave. While I can relate to this from my observations in my younger days, in the seventies and eighties, do I really wish to relive it all again in this crude form? No! I think this play is for a young ‘in your face’ audience, which is probably why most of the audience this evening were young!
Lasting just under two hours, I have to say that the show comes across as a cheap, shallow college play that is only mildly funny. However, it does feature some good songs and music to accompany the many sketches. In fact, I found these songs more entertaining than the play! The pace is also fast which certainly has the effect of preventing you from becoming bored, and the acting is of the highest order. The author himself stars in the play as well as directing it. He and the rest of the cast, Andrew Dunn, Zach Lee and Andrew Dennis, show off their multiple talents as they change characters on a whim.
The popular press had this to say... RACHEL HALIBURTON for THE EVENING STANDARD says, “Bouncers pack a punch.” And goes on to say, “There’s life in the old Godber yet.” PAUL ARENDT for TELETEXT says, "It's slick and sexy production..."And goes on to say, "Fun while it lasts, but don't expect a challenge." JONATHAN GIBBS for TIME OUT says, ""It is a theatrical staple: timeless, insipid and cheap." He goes on to say, "Beyond the few original one-liners, most of the laughs come from the caricatures of lads and lasses on the piss and pull."
I believe “Bouncers” is mainly aimed at a young audience, and sadly I feel this play has forced me to accept, that at 40, I’m not young anymore!