Review: Energetic housewives dish up weak jokes

19 Apr 2013 @ 2.05 pm
| Entertainment
Iron lady: Toyah Willcox
Review: Hormonal Housewives
Venue: Grand Opera House, April 18



There wasn’t an empty seat at the Grand Opera House for Hormonal Housewives. The audience was predominantly female, though there were over a dozen men, who were asked to “consider yourself outed”. The man on his own behind me certainly roared with laughter all the way through.

Before the show started, “Hormonal Housewives FM Radio” played girly songs, and the merchandise stall in the foyer sold box sets of “50 Days Of Play” with pink fur boas and handcuffs.

The show began with the audience being greeted as members of an “HH meeting”. The set was contemporary and very pink, and the lighting used to good effect as the scenes moved quickly from a Glasgow council house in 1974, with women in pinnies and hair nets dancing to the Bay City Rollers, to the school gates where green wellied mummies bitched about each other and bragged about their children Dolce and Gabbana, Coriander and Bach.

A series of weak sketches, with old gags and stereotypical situations, ended with Sarah Jane Buckley being waxed with gaffa tape and topiary trimming equipment. It was like the Tweenies on speed.

The second half was much better. The Zumba sketch was the funniest, centering round Julie Coombe and her inability to co-ordinate. Physical comedy is her forte. As co-writer with husband John McIsaac, she freely used material reminiscent of Mamma Mia, Victoria Wood and early French and Saunders.

The weakest link throughout was Toyah Willcox, billed as the star of the show. It didn’t help that she performed on crutches, though she tried to use them to comic effect.

The finale saw the trio dressed as Dolly Parton, Madonna and Cher, dancing to some of their songs, and finishing with Shout, when the audience was asked to stand and clap along. There was terrific energy in the place, and obviously most people had enjoyed the show… though it wasn’t really for me.