Miller and Salmon: Genesis
- Craig Angus
- 20 August 2019
Ideas and energy compensate for mixed success in the punchline department
Lucy Miller and Benjamin Salmon's show opens with the recording of a Statler and Waldorf style pair of old codgers moaning about their least favourite performances. 'This', one of them groans, 'is the worst show I've ever seen'. Turns out the conversation takes place between the duo's mothers, and is not, thankfully, prophetic. The two fail to be cowed by today's low turn-out, blasting through their sketch hour as if playing to a packed room. In truth they deserve a bigger audience, though they have work to do.
The duo are undoubtedly talented; independently they have charisma and the chemistry in their act is undeniable. It's a slick performance too; there are no awkward gaps of note, with costume changes as much a part of the production as the sketches. Madonna's classic 'Like a Prayer', and 50 Cent and Justin Timberlake's not-so-classic (but still a helluva lot of fun) 'Ayo Technology' blast from the speakers as the two, in particular Salmon, dance as if utterly possessed.
The material isn't all good, which is to be expected from sketch where even the best shows have a tendency to be hit and miss. Miller and Salmon have so many ideas but don't always land a punch at the end. You'll remember Jesus starring in a talk show and a Russian camp that aims to cure homosexuality, but you'd do well to recall anything that hit you hard. A sketch about 'TV's driest show', Countryfile, seems promising, with Miller playing the role of the indecipherable interviewee in a style not dissimilar to The Fast Show's Rowley Birkin. It peters out unceremoniously though, as do maybe half the sketches in Genesis. But the show remains an energetic introduction to Miller and Salmon's weird little world.
Just the Tonic at The Charteris Centre, until 25 Aug, 4.40pm, £5 in advance or donations at the venue.