Monday, November 20, 2006

Playing the game

Went to see a stage version of John Buchan's thrice-filmed The 39 Steps in the West End on Friday. The prodution was a lot of silly fun, and, with just four actors playing over 150 characters, also impressively professional. I think the word 'Pythonesque' has probably been devalued through overuse, so let's just say it was highly Pythonian.

Great opening too, as the hero Richard Hannay (played as a hammy "I say!" type English gent by Charles Edwards), ponders what to do with his evening. Trying to conceive of a "mindless and trivial" diversion, he suddenly announces "I know, a West End play!"

Reading up beforehand, I noticed a rather striking quote about the play on a ticket booking website:

"Exactly the thing the West End has been waiting for" The Observer

Erm, not quite. Thanks to The Guardian's liberal online archiving policy, it's quite easy to dig up the original review, which says this:

"It is its own strange small thing. Which could be exactly the thing the West End has been waiting for."

Sneaky. But then again, if the posters screamed "ITS OWN STRANGE SMALL THING", people probably wouldn't go and see it. Actually they probably would. People are idiots.

How journalism works


Sue Ellen Mischke said...


Anonymous said...

You have not posted for a long time and I am now bored. Get back to writing please.

Will said...

Tara, sorry, Sue: I hadn't heard of that. And now I have. Gross. Although I did once eat grasshoppers when I was drunk in Thailand, and they were frankly delicious.

Anonymous: right away, sir/madam! Good to hear the Goose is giving you withdrawal symptoms after a mere 26 hours.

Anonymous said...

Are you making fun of me? I am your biggest fan! Write more, goose man.

Will said...

No, I'm genuinely flattered and slightly alarmed by the words 'biggest fan'. But I'll do my best for you there anonymous.

Anonymous said...

Little known fact: John Buchan is a distant relative of mine. Or at least he would be if he were still alive.