Theatre review: Kissing Sid James at Jermyn Street Theatre

12:30 17 September 2012

Alan Drake and Charlotte McKinney in Kissing Sid James

Alan Drake and Charlotte McKinney in Kissing Sid James

Archant

Touching comedy whips up a whirlwind of emotions

»Laugh out loud funny in parts and tear-jerkingly sad in others, Kissing Sid James takes its audience on a whirlwind of extreme highs and lows.

It’s not hard to see why this touching comedy, which started out at the Old Red Lion Theatre in Islington before a record breaking run in New York, has won over hearts both sides of the pond. The two-hander by Robert Farquhar follows two desperately sad and lonely souls who, following just one disastrous date together, throw caution to the wind and embark on a weekend break to the seaside.

Eddie (played by Highbury resident Alan Drake of Simon Pegg’s comedy A Fantastic Fear of Everything) promises love interest Crystal (Charlotte McKinney) an exclusive luxury hotel to make amends for his card getting declined on their first meeting.

But the B&B turns out to be anything but luxury, and constant rain leaves them cooped up in their tatty room trying to find some common ground.

You’re initially left questioning why the glamorous and attractive flame-headed Crystal would even consider such a wild proposal from the bumbling and gawky stationary salesmen who still lives at home with his mum.

But, as layers unravelled and emotions ran high, the misery and loneliness of what she had hoped would be a dream life after walking out on a 10 year marriage transpires. And it’s there they find their common ground – with both characters clinging onto any hint or glimmer of hope in their desperate quests for love.

The play manages to blend heartfelt, human and poignant moments with hilarious but excruciatingly cringe-worthy bedroom antics that quite literally had me crying with laughter.

Brace yourself for the scene in which Eddie attempts to act out Crystal’s sexual fantasy with Sean Connery – I think it’s the funniest theatre scene I have ever seen.

Drake depicts the innocence, sadness and the relationship ineptness of loner Eddie superbly, while McKinney perfectly portrays Crystal’s frustration and disappointment with the reality of the new life which she hoped would bring so much.

The play is intense, commands your full attention throughout and flies by in 90 minutes without an interval.

It’s the perfect pick-me-up as the disappointment of summer drawing to a close sets in.

* Kissing Sid James is at Jermyn Street Theatre, SW1, until September 29

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest Stories from SNAP.PA

Danny Dyer was worried he had offended Mary Berry by licking her ear during a drunken acceptance speech at an awards ceremony.

Read more

The robot is an extension of the surgeon’s arms – it’s not doing anything independently.

Read more

The band rocked the socks off their fans at the landmark London venue tonight – including magician Dynamo.

Read more

Promoted content

Valentine's Day Afternoon Tea

London Hilton on Park Lane is inviting couples to celebrate this Valentines Day over a deliciously romantic afternoon tea at Podium Restaurant and Bar. Taking inspiration from the highly popular Confessions of a Chocoholic Afternoon Tea, London Hilton on Park Lane presents the ultimate romantic afternoon out with its Valentine’s Day Afternoon Tea.

Established in 1987, Tucci is one of the North's premier stores for branded clothing, footwear and accessories.

Save up to 70% on designer brands for Men and Women, including G-Star, Diesel, French Connection, Firetrap and many more….our sale is now on.

Valentine's Day in London

If you’re struggling over what to buy for the special person in your life in your life, our Valentine’s Day in London section is here to help.

Top Stories

Quizzes

[Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]

It’s time to test your knowledge on the two London institutions: the Underground, and the boozer.

Read more
Adrian Chiles is no longer ITV's main man... so why not test your knowledge of some of his (and others') greatest gaffes? (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

With news of presenter Adrian Chiles’ sacking by ITV, it’s a good time to remember some of the most memorable punditry blunders.

Read more
[Image by Gary Tallowin]

In which we remember the stations that have gone before...

Read more