Norris & Parker: See You at the Gallows
A loud and rampant hour of dark sketches and deliriously created characters
Sketches, characters and a bit of cabaret glitz are taken to the dark side by Norris & Parker in their second hour of morbidity and malaise. Soundtracked on piano by Victorian hipster type Chris Thomson, the duo build on their queens of black humour reputation after last year's All Our Friends are Dead. Tongues are firmly planted in cheek from the opening number – a rally for feminazis with the intimidating pair in black jumpsuits and German accents – to the final song, a tribute to the inevitability of death and futility of life.
Sketches range from a 1980s cop series inspired by Jack the Ripper (Billy the Cannibal who won't stop eating the town's women) to the fantastic Jackie Cooper Clarke, a snarling, quick-fire performance poet who rhymes just as well (if not better) than the Salford legend she's based on.
There's some audience interaction that doesn't really lend anything to the overall narrative except to vaguely embarrass some male 'volunteers'. But that aside, the duo's bickering about the state of their relationship (Parker is neurotic and overly invested; Norris is harsh and 'business partners only') prods at the complexities of female friendships without shoving it down your throat. This subtlety, thankfully, is kept to a minimum, as Norris & Parker are at their best when they're loud, rampant and maniacal.
Pleasance Courtyard, until 28 Aug (not 21), 10.45pm, £7.50–£9.50 (£7–£8.50).