George Ryegold’s God-In-A-Bag: Fringe Review

george-ryegold-s-god-in-a-bag_26455Just A-Rye of Comedy Gold

3/5

Dr Ryegold returns to Edinburgh with a new show that wouldn’t be amiss on Radio 4. The creation of Toby Williams, Ryegold is a character comedy about an unconventional surgeon who is self-interested, underachieving and lazy, yet somehow still likeable.

This year’s venture takes the form of a comedy play in which the corduroy-clad doctor struggles with love, a flaccid career and competition from a painfully arrogant colleague. Suspended for unexplained reasons – although appropriation of prescription drugs is hinted at – Ryegold is stirred into contention when an encounter with an irritatingly successful colleague gives him the chance to prove himself. A love interest comes in the form of stern headmistress Penny – Lindsay Sharman – who finds herself drawn to the portly physician despite his lack of gentility and tight-fisted nature.

While those that aren’t Ryegold come across very much as stock characters, Williams has created a persona that is fantastic with his verbose language and lack of subtlety. A scene involving the estranged doctor delivering a sex education speech to a group of year nine’s through comparing it to a porn film is particularly memorable, its risqué nature and clever wordplay being thoroughly entertaining.

God-in-a-Bag isn’t a bundle of laughs but choice moments certainly hint at brilliance. A charming comedy that toys with a playful black sense of humour, it can be recommended as enjoyable post-lunch entertainment.

Taken from Broadway Baby, published Aug 2012.

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