Crizards @ Pleasance Dome

Will Rowland and Eddy Hare return to the Edinburgh Fringe for their second hour as Crizards, and it's a wonky war epic

Review by Emma Sullivan | 17 Aug 2023
  • Crizards

After last year’s acclaimed debut, Cowboys, Crizards are back with a new show, This Means War. Will’s worried it’s a bit boring, but Eddy is aflame with the sacred duty of telling his grandfather’s war stories.

As shown to such good effect in their debut, the combination of Will’s skittish, gadfly energy and Eddy’s severity is comedy gold, and with that dynamic in place, the pair can get away with pretty much anything.  At times things are really quite sketchy – a vital prop goes astray, doesn’t matter; lines get mangled, all the funnier. The mayhem is entirely intentional, of course, and all part of their lo-fi, comically crappy aesthetic.  

We see the preparations for departure to the front: Eddy (as Private Grandfather) broodingly intense; best friend, Will (Private Careful) less bothered – and packing his swimming towel. The familiar tropes are all there, drilled into us through War Poetry modules from school: idealistic, repressed young men, the idyllic homeland (the green fields of 'Scrumpshire'), the cruelty of senior military staff. A self-described ‘wonky epic’, the show playfully reshuffles these cliches; it’s wildly irreverent, but there is a thread of concern about sacrifice, remembrance and respect, and the mock-heroic vibe floats a question about the contrast between the actual battles fought by the war generation and the current ‘battles’ faced by their grandsons (boring temp jobs in the main).

First cowboys, now war – perhaps this is the second in an ongoing series about male archetypes from Crizards, and we’re left wondering what next year will bring. Whatever it is, it’ll be a lot of fun.

Crizards: This Means War, Pleasance Dome (10 Dome), until 27 Aug, 5.50pm, £12-14