Fringe Review: The Brandreth Papers | The Daily Dust delivering the best bric a brac, daily news and events with a British flavour

* * * (3 stars)

This is an interesting mix of one man monologue, comedy character piece, and good old fashioned shaggy dog stories. It doesn’t quite hold together, but the charm of Brandon Brandreth holds it all together with passion, charm, delightful turns of phrase, and dexterous wordplay.

The chiselled chin, smart dinner jacket, slicked back hair (and a prop Walther PPK pistol) bring to mind a young James Bond, but it feels a little bit excessive. There’s no easing the audience into the character, and it’s vital to the show that we believe in this character before we are taken on a journey that covers love, a Kraken, Tolstoy, the Duke of Edinburgh, and more. Without that belief, the heightened reality feels false. While that might be the ultimate intention, I think the audience should be taken on that journey, rather than start at the destination.

There is a good show in here, and there’s every chance that it wil improve over the Edinburgh run, but right now it’s more Roger Moore than Sean Connery, and I’m a Connery man.

* * * (3 stars)

The Brandreth Papers
Gilded Balloon

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