We Will Rock You review: Ridiculous, bombastic - everything it needed to be
- Credit: Johan Persson
Sometimes when attending the theatre you hope for a certain degree of subtlety.
We Will Rock You, Ben Elton's long-running jukebox musical based around the songs of Queen has all the subtlety of a sledgehammer.
But while subtle it is not, why would you ever want it to be?
The musical, which opened on the West End 20 years ago, is bombastic, over-the-top, camp, in-your-face and utterly, utterly, ridiculous. Frankly, everything you could possibly ask for when it comes to Queen.
Its storyline is, in all honesty, stupid. Set in a dystopian future on iPlanet, formerly known as Earth, the human race is enslaved by a giant corporation called Globalsoft, which has wiped rock 'n' roll from the face of existence.
However, a select few - known as the Bohemians - can remember the likes of The Beatles, Elvis Presley and - of course - Queen.
It is then up to two rebels - named Galileo Figaro and Scaramouche (no, really) - to lead an uprising, cross the Seven Seas of Rye to the land of champions and save rock 'n' roll once and for all. What was that I said about subtlety?
- 1 See inside 'stunning' flat overlooking Norwich Market
- 2 Family sue Wetherspoon after man falls to death in city pub
- 3 5 new shop openings in Norwich to look forward to
- 4 Blanket ban: Standing room only for Simply Red fans
- 5 Chim chim, I do! Couple tie the knot in Mary Poppins-themed wedding
- 6 Military helicopters spotted flying over Norfolk
- 7 Peter Crouch speaks on bid to track down his 'Norfolk husband'
- 8 Police called after sudden death at home near Norwich
- 9 Landlady 'hard at work' as city pub prepares for July reopening
- 10 All you need to know ahead of the Earlham Park summer gigs
But while its story is built around cliche after cliche, the spectacle is everything it needed to be.
The biggest challenge for any reproduction of Queen music is to find a way of filling the enormous shoes of the incomparable Freddie Mercury.
However, not one member of the 24-strong cast fell short of bringing the songs to life.
No less so than female lead Scaramouche, played by Notre Dame Sixth Form alumni Anna Davey, the tour's understudy - although nobody would have noticed it - who took the show away in her pocket with her transcendent vocal range and hugely likable presence.
Highlights include an emotionally charged duet of Who Wants to Live Forever, a headbanging rendition of Hammer to Fall and, of course, the moment the Bohemians find their Rhapsody - saved cheekily until after the final curtain call.
And while all the big hits were there, for this Queen fan, Easter eggs in the form of nods to album tracks like Death on Two Legs were just the ticket.
It was bonkers, full of pomp, outrageous, cheesy, cringy in parts, hilarious in others and absolutely everything a Queen musical should have been.