Being from ‘De Blanch’ as it is affectionately known, I was either going to love or hate a show based on the ‘loveliness’ of the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre and it’s frequenters. When I first saw Darraghs video from the launch of the Fringe Festival I thought this was one show I had to see. If nothing else, for the catchy theme tune 🙂
Billed as a ‘grotesque comedy about shopping’, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. I knew there would be skits based on stereotypical skangers but wasn’t quite prepared for Orlagh and Enda, living on credit, driving a Pajero, with 2.4 children and a credit card bill as long as your arm.
To be honest, ‘The Blanch’ was my first ever Fringe Festival event. I expected things to be a bit rough round the edges, simple costumes, no sets, etc and that’s what we got. The material in places was spot on (the recording of the voice at the crossing is an exact copy and was a brilliant addition) and in other places, not so much. It’s a show that has huge potential to be great fun but it needs polishing and trimming. There are several scenes they could do without and the almost gratuitous violence against each other and (admittedly imaginary) children was just of no comedic value in my opinion, although the lady sitting next to me seemed to find it hilarious!
The show I saw was a preview so presumably things will be tightened up and changed around for the main run and hopefully they make the most of the real comedy potential in some of the sketches.
The cast were great with Amy Conroy in particular really stealing the limelight from the two lads. I’m not sure I know anyone that I’d recommend it to but I wish them all the best with the run in the Fringe and in the Axis, Ballymun after that.