The show opens with the bad guys; Dr Bloom played by Marc Pickering and General Blight played by Carl Mullaney, both of whom worked well together and it felt like they had walked straight out of a comic strip into the real world.
Sadly, their current revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying – the first major one in this country since its 1963 premiere – falls on the side of the fatally old-fashioned. Director Benji Sperring’s sure touch has seen him work wonders with shows like The Toxic Avenger but here, an inconsistency of tone and performance level means that it sits awkwardly on this august stage.
Based on the cult movie of the 1980’s The Toxic Avenger is a gloriously silly and immensely enjoyable spoof on comic book heroes. It doesn’t take itself seriously, it’s just one delightful evening of entertainment from start to finish with a hugely talented cast, whose energy was at such a high level they gave out fun with a capital F!
To describe the show as tongue in cheek could almost be an obtuse reference to the grotesque prosthetic (good work from Jonathan Moriarty North’s studios) that Anderson sports as Toxie. But this musical’s not to be taken seriously and it’s only to be seen by those who share that guilty pleasure of liking their comedy served bloody, with a large helping of political incorrectness on the side.