No Son of Mine (3 stars)

This article is from 2010

No Son of Mine

Family secrets uncovered amid a heap of gags

For anyone who has been embarrassed by a parent or felt shame at their offspring, this is possibly not the show for you. Then again, those scenarios most likely cover everyone, and it would be a shame to miss out on such a pleasing mid-afternoon show. Rufus Jones plays precious ‘act-or’ Dennis Hazeley, who has just been stood up by his co-star in a distinctly non-PC play about the gay scene among the Taliban, Afghan Hounds. Unleashing himself solo upon this dramatic two-hander, his Grimsby-based father Don (Alex Kirk) enters the fray and seeks, as ever, to trample all over his son’s dreams.

This is the cue for plenty back and forth banter with massive subtext, but any seriousness is left behind for a wildly silly reconstruction of the moment when Don met Dennis’ mum. With Dennis in the role as the seductress. Jones (who co-formed the Perrier-nominated Dutch Elm Conservatoire) and Kirk (one half of Kirk and Messingham) fit together like a glove as the piece delves into a dark family history but the gags happily keep coming, whether in subtle or innuendo form.

Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, until 30 Aug (not 25), 3.15pm, £9–£10 (£8.50–£9).

No Son of Mine

  • 3 stars

Dennis Hazeley (actor, delusional) and his father Don (excruciating, Grimsby-based) offer up fun and dysfunction. Gasp as the family skeletons topple out of the closet: Don’s magic hand trick, Dennis’s letter from Rudolf Nureyev and a treasured, albeit Nazi, heirloom. For anyone who looked at their father and craved…