Rory Sheridan's Tales of the Antarctica (3 stars)

This article is from 2011.

Rory Sheridan's Tales of the Antarctica

David O’Doherty in very funny piece that risks becoming one-note in tone

Rory Sheridan is a lovesick man, who inadvertently ends up on an Antarctic expedition to win his bride. Sheridan is no Scott or Shackleton, he complains too much for a start – about the penguins, about the cabbage he has to eat, about the farts that that produces – but he does muster the courage to take over at the helm of his ship when duty calls.

The scripting is meticulous, and comedian David O’Doherty – who writes and performs this one-hander as Sheridan – employs such a high level of quality control that if he trips up on even one word within a spectacular sentence like, ‘retooled Icelandic haddock sloop’, he’ll backtrack to say the right thing. This self-imposed strictness is O’Doherty’s slight downfall. The delivery is so intense that he doesn’t notice (or doesn’t care about) his snow trousers falling down as several acts of very moderate derring-do are recounted.

Being in The Antarctica (sic) is like ‘being stuck in a shed with men and their farts’ he roars at the show’s opening. He’s still bellowing at the end, playing on that mixture of intense delivery and innocuous content that’s become his hallmark, but the tone has begun to feel one-note. Still, there are very many moments of brilliant wordplay in this very funny piece.

Rory Sheridan’s Tales of The Antarctica, Underbelly, 0844 545 8252, until 28 Aug, 3.20pm, £9.50-£10 (£8.50-£9).

David O'Doherty presents: Rory Sheridan's Tales of The Antarctica

  • 3 stars

It’s 1917 and Rory Sheridan, Ireland's sixth or seventh greatest Antarctic explorer, delivers an illustrated talk on his not entirely successful journey to the south. 'A national treasure' (Irish Times).

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