Old Red Lion Theatre, London – until 27 October 2018
There’s nothing quite like being smacked around the head by the brilliance of a theatre company and that was my experience the first time I saw Out of the Forest Theatre with their striking take on the story of Lizzie Borden – Bury the Hatchet. So, of course, I was delighted to find their newest show popping up as part of the London Horror Festival at the Old Red Lion.
Written by and starring Joseph Cullen and Sasha Wilson, On Your Head Be It – A Cautionary Tale is the story of a couple trying to enjoy a bit of holiday in deepest Wales, a break from the old routine. After a rocky journey there and a few bottles of sauvignon blanc have been downed, it soon becomes clear to what extent Stuart and Eleanor are no ordinary couple though.
For the way they get their kicks is in a spot of murder here and there and in Eleanor’s case, everywhere. So Stuart has taken them to the gateway to Snowdonia but even there, temptation isn’t too far away. And as this macabre comedy unfolds in this delightfully lo-fi production from Rosa Crompton, it is pushing their relationship to the brink.
They play with form, as flashback sequences (Jamie’s was the best…), drinking games, TED talks and a song and dance routine are all employed to flesh out this pair. They get devilishly funny (although the Countdown theme tune is now RUINED for me) and also surprisingly tender as they probe as what might underlie even the most psychotic of souls and it is all really rather good fun.