A provocative farce of unremitting horror, the finale can not come soon enough.
The script is packed with devious manoeuvres and well-honed fiddles. 646 fine actors, under the parliamentary fees office inventive direction, execute slapstick accounts and deliver receipts with near-perfect timing. But the onslaught of escalating troughing seems to grow more desperate as the intermissionless show goes on. It excites a demand for justice which is never satisfied.
With its splendid grasp of the effective pause, the Daily Telegraph brings out something easily missed by a mere reader – the pure narrative value of loose ends left hanging. Let moral values go hang themselves: Robert Winnett enjoys himself immensely with his tale and so do we. Sympathy may not be stirred but interest is securely held.
This production has managed to capture the tragi-comic nature of the tax payers’ endless struggle with the thieving gits in parliament perfectly whilst emphasising the desperation of the human condition. It will undoubtedly go down as one of the “did you hear?” performances of the decade due to the spectacular performances by Jacqui Smith and Tony McNulty – a showcase of two world class rip-off artistes working together in perfect harmony.
The penultimate scene of the bulimic, adulterous, croquet playing, over-weight steward on the old Rangi line, queuing at the fees office to be recompensed for his latest shattered toilet seat was one of undignified pathos, relieved only by the thundering cloven hooves of Scotland Yard’s finest beating a path to the door – not of the thieving gits – but of the whistle blower who exposed them.
In a crowded year for Best Political Scandal direction, Heather Brooke should receive an Oscar.