Peter Panto and the Incredible Stinkerbell
- Lorna Irvine
- 9 December 2013
Alliteration, scathing satire and a smattering of Glasgow references make this another glorious McKnight panto
Johnny McKnight, never knowingly understated, has cheekily redefined pantomime for this generation. Peter Panto continues in this vein, with an explosion of kitsch. The original story has been given some distinctive Glaswegian tweaks and classic McKnight elements: alliteration, scathing satire on conspicuous consumption and high-level camp. Its stall is set out early with a dance routine that imagines Busby Berkeley let loose in Victoria's. Meanwhile, the pirate scene is relocated to the Blue Lagoon chippie.
Kenny Miller's glorious Day-Glo design looks tactile, festooned with fur, pink stars and Kermit the Frog, but it's the Unholy Trinity of Anita Vettesse as Captain New Look, Darren Brownlie as Chai Thai and Louise McCarthy as affected stage school brat West End Wendy who are the real draw. Sally Reid's lovelorn, flatulent Stinkerbell provides the pathos, as well as fart gags.
It's not recommended for little ones (as evinced by several distracted wriggling tots), especially with its single entendres (sometimes a battered sausage is not a battered sausage), but with McKnight's wonderfully savvy and layered writing, teenagers and adults should love the twerking references and bitchy banter. None of this is especially ironic as McKnight clearly has a genuine love for what he does. Just don't get him started on Waitrose.
Tron Theatre, Glasgow, until Sat 4 Jan.