The Friends of Jack Kairo & Jack Kairo and the long hard Kiss Goodbye – The New Theatre – Review
Welcome to the world of Jack Kairo, a private detective who struggles to get by. This is two of his adventures, an omnibus of sorts. In The Friends of Jack Kairo, our sleuth tries to solve the murder of a wealthy industrialist and the father of his ex-lover. In Jack Kairo and the Long Hard Kiss Goodbye, Jack tries to solve a series of Austerity killings and to find out the identity of the mysterious Bondholder.
The Friends of Jack Kairo is a solo show, where Simon Toal takes on all parts and creates a diverse group of wacky individuals to solve a case that may or may not involve weapons of mass destruction. It is an endless stream of gags, very much in the mould of the Naked Gun/ Airplane series. The humour varies from sharp one liners to fart jokes with no break inbetween, but the acting ability of Toal playing the slightly dim detective (among other characters) really keep the audience entertained.
The Long Hard Kiss Goodbye is the more successful of the two plays and features Patrick O’Donnell as well as Toal. O’Donnell covers a lot of ground in his performances and moves from Mexican pimps to camp Shakespearean actors among many others. No stereotype is left untouched and this is definitely not politically correct humour, but it had the crowd howling with laughter last night (I was quite concerned the man in front of me would do himself damage). No film noir cliché is left untouched, and the usual mix of dames, creepy foreigners and back stabbing mobsters all make an appearance.
While the gags in these two pieces are well written and sometimes very sharp, it is really about the performances of the two main actors. Toal plays the dead pan detective with style and his versatility is what keeps the show on the road. The introduction of O’Donnell in the second piece varies the mood and makes the two plays very distinct. This is a very enjoyable trip to the theatre, and well worth a visit for fans of comedy and film noir alike.
by Simon Toal, Patrick O’Donnell, and Vincent A. O’Reilly.
The Friends of Jack Kairo – Written an performed by Simon Toal
Jack Kairo and the long hard Kiss Goodbye – written by Simon Toal, Patrick O’Donnell, and Vincent A. O’Reilly – Story by Simon Toal
Performed by Simon Toal, Patrick O’Donnell
Directed by Vincent A. O’Reilly
The Friends of Jack Kairo – 60 minutes
Jack Kairo and the long hard Kiss Goodbye – 50 minutes