Tuesday, 12 May 2009

If it looks like a turd! A non critics view of a top West End play

Mrs B was recently given tickets to a "top" West End show. We thought it was out of kindness but now I'm convinced Mrs B must have really upset someone along the way. The play in question was "Waiting for Godot" which is a play about absolutely nothing. Yes it had some of today's finest actors, Sir Ian Mackellan (a.k.a. Gandalf), Patrick Stewart (A.K.A Jean-Luc Picard )and Simon Callow (A.K.A The funeral in Four Weddings ) but watching great actors doing nothing is not the best use of any one's time. I'm sure the very same critics, who gave the play such outstanding reviews, would not dare suggest that two hours of your time, spent watching paint dry, would be a worthwhile experience. Yet I would argue that the subtle changes in colour that the paint goes through during the drying process is more rewarding and possibly more educational than watching this play.

If you ever have the misfortune to find yourself watching "Waiting for Godot" I would recommend that you leave at the interval. Mrs B and I did not and will possibly regret it to the end of our days. You see the play is not actually one play but two. The second being a replay of the first with any possible degree of interest removed (admittedly an impressive feat as I failed to spot anything remotely entertaining in the first part. The closest was Sir Ian eating a carrot and yes, this "highlight" was removed from the second part). At the end Mrs B and I sat stunned, not just at the futility of the play but at the standing ovation that this drivel received. Call us philistines but in my opinion if it looks like a turd, smells like a turd and tastes allegedly 'Aside 1' like a turd, then it is a turd, even if every art critic and other member of the audience says that it is art. Talk about the Emperor's new clothes.
My Yogress, Lorna, her son Guy and their three
dogs in the canine production "waiting for Godog"

Finally Godog turns up....which is more than can
be said for Godot. P.S. for those of you who have spent
ages looking for the third dog, in first picture, what do
you think they were waiting for.....

It is hard to think that this was the same Theatre at which Mrs B and I saw the triumph that was "A few good men". The recent demise of the BlackLOGhistorical gives me the perfect excuse to sneakily revive one of my old un-web-published blogs.....Think of it as getting two blogs for the price of one.

.......After the disaster that was the 'Man behind the Iron Mask', I'm back on the road to redemption, and I'm confident that I would have made it all the way to salvation if Rob Lowe had not drenched me in spittle (Mrs B got very jealous of my Rob gob experience). I had managed to secure front row tickets 'Aside 2' for "A Few Good Men" which is the best play that I have seen. (Not counting Mrs B playing a goat 'Aside 3', or when she got praised for her excellent Welsh accent whilst performing as a Liverpool bus conductress. Her heart went out of acting at this point , which was the Tadworth Local Amateur Dramatic & Local Luvvies Society's and, I truly believe, the world's, loss.) Rob Lowe in the Tom Cruise part was excellent, but could have played the roll a little dryer for my taste. Even Karen Macdonald (Steve's ex Mrs from Coronation Street) produced a fine performance, equal to Demi Moore herself without having to resort to hanging around with people half her age (although if Keira Knightley wishes to hang around with people twice her age, there will be no complaints from me. I am, after all, still attempting to find, and possibly fight, my mid life crisis), while the male prison guard out of Bad Girls did a very creditable Jack Nicholson impression. (My friend Sophie went to see A Few Good Men at about the same time and came out with a classic line. Just as they were going into the theater her companion asked her if he could have his ticket. Doing her best Jack Nicholson impression Sophie exploded - "Tickets, tickets, you can't handle the tickets!" . Well I liked it and thought it was quick thinking for a 6foot Blonde......) All in all it was an excellent evening all round, despite being mugged in broad daylight by an NCP car park. I thought I was renting a space, not purchasing the whole damned place.

I had also hoped to bring you a report from the Ice Bar in London 'Aside 4', but I was not up to two muggings in one day. £12 to get in with a maximum stay of 45 mins 'Aside 6' So we went to the Apple store instead. What an experience that was, hundreds of homeless twenty year old somethings wondering aimlessly round the place with their lap tops and ipods, fantastic. Now here's an idea, stop wasting all your money on electrical goods and alcohol and start saving for a deposit for a home.


  1. I went to see Waiting for Godot with my Mum 30 years ago...I was emotionally drained, staggered, and overwhelmed by the content of the play. I found it desperately sad and thought provoking. Were you at the same play? It remains in my own memory as one of the very best things I have ever seen staged......

  2. Actually not 30 years, probably 24 years ago (I'm not that old...)

  3. Skipper, I can only put it down to the fact that you don't get out much....

    Incidently 24 years would put it at about the time we first met you. Perhaps you are confusing our first meeting with the play "leaving you emotionally drained, staggered, overwhelmed, desperately sad and thought provoking". It kind of works if you swap the "thought provoking" bit with "Glad to see the back of....."

  4. Sorry Mr B, I’m trying to respect your right to an opinion, but it’s just too hard! I’m 100% with skipper on this one…

    Undoubtedly one of the finest plays ever, written by one of the finest playwrights ever.

  5. Rich How can you do this to me - This puts me 2 nil down. I'm not sure I can face the second half, especially if it contains no gratuitous scenes of actual carrot eating.

    Perhaps I would have enjoyed it more if I had slept through it, or maybe I did and only dreamt it was awful.

    No, no, no, I standbye what I said, it was terrible. Mrs B and I had the misfortune to step in it and are still trying to scrape it off our shoes.

  6. Yippee, I don't think I've ever been on a winning team (even at half time!)

  7. SkipperThe dice are obviously loaded, most of the who people who have seen this dogs breakfast of a play are either to embarrassed to admit having attended or clinging to the art card.

    Enjoy your victory.....

  8. Patrick Stewart can only play one part - himself. I know we went to see the latest Hamlet at Christmas which also had PS playing the dad, except the latest Hamlet was on his back so we got the understudy in his place and PS playing himself! We came away feeling slightly cheated.

    Although the understudy was very good and you could use your imagination and pretend he was really David Tennett!

  9. IMO When I first read your comment I had visions of Hamlet being played in a vertical position. If you think about it this would put things on a level playing field (Excuse the pun). All the rich people who can afford the seats in the stalls (Which currently would only include MP's on expenses) would end up with a limited view. While the 'povs in the gods' would get to see all the action. Sadly the critics would no doubt say the play was a little flat and one dimensional.


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