Fat Tongue review - SkinnyFest

Article by Sean Michaels | 14 Aug 2006
A wrenchingly funny hour of sketch comedy whose three performers offer the perfect mix of giving and not giving a shit. Using tossed-on togas and poorly fitting wigs, the Fat Tongue kids visit Greek resorts and Roman amphitheatres, porn sets, karaoke bars and baby-shopping clinics. It's their surrealist take on celebrity that brings the biggest laughs: Cher as a desultory chav, Angelina Jolie's son on a horrific rampage, Zinedine Zidane breathing heavily in a McDonalds. This last sequence – a series of sketches that show Zidane "putting the old team together again", Magnificent Seven-style - is beautifully performed, all half-looks and small flourishes. The troupe knows precisely when to over- and under-sell their characters, moving with confidence through a surprisingly precise script. They're even able to make something from the tired source material of The Lord of the Rings: a chance encounter between backpackers in Middle Earth is ridiculous, exquisite and – until the closing moments – almost note perfect. These occasional stumbles, most noticeable at the end of the production, are the only thing holding the show back: hiccups of timing or punchline that a few more performances should squelch. Yet in the meantime, Fat Tongue is still a zesty, clever show; if not black, then certainly brown-humoured; a sharpened knife in a programme full of spoons. [Sean Michaels]
Fat Tongue, Pleasance Dome, until August 28, 18:15, £8.50/£7.50 (£7/£6).