Adelaide Fringe

Fringe Review: Don’t Mess With The Dummies

A slapstick circus show that promises unbelievable acrobatics and a jungle adventure

A fun show for children who enjoy slapstick humour
3

Presented by Dummies Corp.
Reviewed 21st February 2020

A slapstick circus show that promises unbelievable acrobatics and a jungle adventure, Don’t Mess With The Dummies is a Jungle adventure for the whole family.  Although it isn’t really apparent that the trio are in the Jungle. I have to admit I just thought they were camping outside somewhere with a pesky fly, backpack, tent and two potted trees as the only indication of the nature of the setting. I did also notice that the backpack had an Aboriginal flag sewn on the front which was a nice to see however it was contradicted with no Acknowledgement to Country. I’m not sure whether this was a venue or an artist oversight but it was very noticeable given that other shows and venues have made it the norm.

The show began fine; there was some slap stick humour and a little dialogue but unfortunately, I can’t say it was anything new from other shows of its kind from past Fringe years. As the show went on the ‘unbelievable’ acrobatics were also the same types of things we have seen before and were okay but not unbelievable. Swinging a person between two people, a person on someone’s shoulders, assisted flips etc and the use of hoops and skipping ropes are feats not out of the ordinary.

The show had some funny parts and the sleeping bag routine was ultimately what saved it. However, overall some jokes went for too long and although slapstick humour is meant to be exaggerated physical activity there was one point with a popcorn scene that felt quite unsafe to be demonstrating to children within a children’s show and I noted that two different parents around me stated to their children during the scene “You are never to do that okay”.  I also noted that there was no warning on the Fringe guide page or before the show to say that strobe type lighting is used towards the end which is obviously something to consider if your children are sensitive to that type of thing.

All in all, it was a good show. I just don’t believe it lived up to what was promised in its blurb and that it should perhaps be listed under comedy rather than circus. The 3 performers did however mention that it was their first time performing in a year due to COVID so here’s hoping they find their feet and it was only a first couple of days jitters with a strong season to come.

Reviewed by Tara Forbes-Godfrey

Venue:  The Cornucopia at Gluttony
Season:  Fri 19 Feb: 5pm Sat 20 Feb: 1:30pm, 3pm Sun 21 Feb: 3pm Fri 26 Feb: 5pm Sat 27 Feb: 1:30pm, 3pm Sun 28 Feb: 3pm Fri 5 Mar: 5pm Sat 6 Mar: 1:30pm, 3pm Sun 7 Mar: 3pm Mon 8 Mar: 1:30pm, 3pm Fri 12 Mar: 5pm Sat 13 Mar: 1:30pm, 3pm Sun 14 Mar: 3pm Wed 17 Mar: 10:30am Fri 19 Mar: 5pm Sat 20 Mar: 1:30pm, 3pmSun 21 Mar: 3pm
Duration:  60mins
Tickets:  $15- $80
Bookings: https://adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix/don-t-mess-with-the-dummies-af2021

Rating out of 5: 3

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