CoMEDy DElETE THE bAnJAx … AnD you! PleaSance courtyard (Venue 33) HHHHH
THE emerging sketch troupe were one of last year’s Free Fringe stand-outs, and expectations were high to see how they would tackle performing at the Pleasance. They’ve retained much of 2009’s lark-about intimacy, welcoming their audience in and giving them paper to sketch caricatures of them on.
Nevertheless, the Banjax have consolidated their reputation rather than progressed here, their rougher edges less forgivable in a bigger venue. They’ve overspent on an elephant too apparently, so Dan Cook, routinely the most maverick element in their skits, takes matters into his own bloody hands.
Reappearing as a superhero, he flouts selfless convention saving Caroline Jones from peril, then hosts a Come Dine With
Me episode containing even greater hostility than usual. After this reasonably strong opening, they finish pretty well too, with a ludicrously overwrought birthday party crisis and a skydiving marriage proposal, ratcheting up of the scripted bedlam supplemented by a willingness to ad-lib if one of them starts corpsing.
In-between though, scenes of an impending aircrash or Jones and Sam Champion as prickly Australian relationship counsellors are less impressive, over-reliant on the performances to make them even semi-work.
A shame, because the Banjax have most of the right elements here.
Until 30 August. Today, 5:45pm