Saucy Jack & The Space Vixens, King's Head Theatre

Saucy Jack & The Space Vixens. What's that you say? What is it? One way of putting it is The Rocky Horror Show set in space. To its devotees, it is a guaranteed good night out, merging glitter and innuendos aplenty with disco-inspired tunes.

The show has been around for the best part of 20 years, first appearing at the Edinburgh Festival and every couple of years returning to the capital. Its latest incarnation is now showing at the King's Head Theatre in Islington, London and having seen the show in the past performed in the West End and more intimate venues, the show's present location is ideal. The frisson that's generated from close proximity of the cast to the audience is second to none.

In a nutshell, the musical is about a bar at the far side of the universe where the performers meet the most of ignoble of demises – death by stiletto! The bar's proprietor Saucy Jack is the primary suspect, but everyone's too wrapped up with trying to make the big time to think about the danger on their very doorstep. The arrival of a seller of contraband PVC garments (only natural materials are allowed in the future) promises good times ahead, but it is the arrival of the esteemed Space Vixens – the all-female crime fighting trio, that truly shakes things up at the bar.

All three Vixens (Lorna Hall, Zoe Nicholls, Jamie Birkett) as well as 'prospector' Sophie Cordwell James pull of their roles with aplomb. The other actor-musicians are splendid in their respective roles and special mention should be made to Tom Whalley (Dr Whackoff) who is hands down the best actor to have ever played his role. Period. The energy and chutzpah he brings to the part  elevates it from being one of the show's peripheral characters to centre stage.

Of the show's tunes, songs such as Park My Bike channels the energy of Bat Out Of Hell, but it is the superlative Glitter Boots Saved My Life and All I Need Is Disco that will have the audience clapping and dancing along with the cast. If I have one small gripe, it's that from where I was sitting during the first 15-20 minutes of the show, it was near-impossible to hear the performers sing over the music played. Thankfully this was not the case during the rest of the show, the remainder punctuated with memorable performances.

Saucy Jack isn't a 'highbrow' show, but what it does do, it does exceedingly well, with an infectious energy guaranteed to lift your spirits.

© Michael Davis 2016

Saucy Jack & The Space Vixens runs at the King's Head theatre, London, until 21st May 2016.

 

http://www.kingsheadtheatre.com/
www.saucyjackandthespacevixens.com

Author's review: 
4