Phoenix Nights Live (review)
17th Feb 2015
I’ve decided to wait until after Phoenix Night Live had completely finished to write a review in order to not ruin the surprise for anyone going. And given that Peter Kay has said there will be no more dates, no tour and no DVD, I feel I can openly talk about it here.
If you never watch Phoenix Nights before, start here. Basically, it’s a comedy series set in a very British working men’s club and tells the story of the characters who work there.
Before the show even begun I was laughing at the Hear’say Pure and Simple Tour 2001 advert on the curtains, while songs that once featured in Phoenix Nights play in the background. From the moment I walked into the arena I knew it was going to be a good night.
**Note: from this point onwards you may not have a clue what on Earth what’s going on.**
The show started with the main character, Brian Potter, stuck on this stair lift at home. Rayvon comes to the rescue, followed by paramedics and firemen.
From this point onwards, the audience were made to feel like they were spending an evening at the Phoenix Club, experiencing “5 star cabaret entertainment”. The characters from the series each take turns to take the stage and entertain the audience. There was everything from Young Kenny doing stand-up comedy, to Kenny Senior doing a sing-along while doing his usual lying. Rayvon provided a disco, Holy Mary ran a prize raffle (with the chance to win one of Brian Potter’s famous vases), Jerry did Karaoke and Les and Alan performed a magic show.
The show ended with Max and Paddy having a fight with the Bolton Dwarfs before a dance-off with the Asian Elders.
Ted Robbin’s character, Den Perry, had been written out of the show after he collapsed on the first night but as you can probably gather it was relatively easy to remove him from the show. Apparently on the final night he made a cameo from his hospital bed.
**Normal, non-nerdy service resumes here.**
Overall, I had the most incredible evening and I honestly don’t think I’ve laughed so much in years. It was a real treat for loyal fans of the show with references to previous material, but lots of new jokes and current jokes too. It was certainly not for the easily offended among us (lots of references to Gary Glitter and Rolf Harris), but it was such great fun.
Best of all, all the money raised from ticket sales went to Comic Relief. Raising money for charity and having fun is never a bad thing.