Adelaide Fringe

Fringe review: More Than a Game

Watch the comedic retelling of the AFL cheating scandal involving former Geelong footballer Billy Brownless, his ex-wife, and his best mate, Garry Lyon.


Presented by Numero Uno Productions

Reviewed 19th February 2022

To many Australians, AFL is so much more than a game.

Footy is an Australian social phenomenon, that sparks joyous victory or despair in the hearts of footy supporters across the country. From shaggy-mullet-men with VB’s in their hands to young kids with black sharpies begging their sporting heroes for an autograph, AFL is undeniably a pillar of Aussie pop culture.

If you’re a die-hard AFL fan, then we recommend checking out More Than a Game: the hilarious retelling of one of the biggest national football scandals in recent years.

The original, hour-long, comedy rock-musical follows Billy Brownless (former Geelong footballer and media personality), his deteriorating marriage, and his ex-wife’s affair with best mate, Garry Lyon.

The show begins on an episode of The Footy Show, where Host Sam Newman forces Billy to confront his feelings about the divorce and Lyon’s betrayal. Billy, initially in denial, takes a trip down memory lane to understand his broken relationships.

While the storyline isn’t for everyone, the musical and theatrical performances of the six-person cast and five-piece band were endlessly entertaining and comedically-timed. Even those who didn’t know the backstory could take pleasure in the satirical take on Australian footy culture.

It’s also rather satisfying to watch karma prey on the hyper-masculine, beer-drinking, chick-chasing characters – forcing them to re-evaluate their past.

The young actors got to showcase their killer singing and acting chops, performing original songs and renditions of popular drinking chants. Once the crowd heard “We like to drink with Billy, ’cause Billy is our mate!” – trust me when we say, everyone knew what to chant next.

Another crowd-favourite moment was when Billy Brownless bumped into Shane Crawford backstage of The Footy Show, and Shane warned Billy of the dangers of sacrificing your dignity for air time. Let’s just say, less-than-dignified costumes were worn and a few laughs resulted!

The tongue-in-cheek mock-musical certainly puts a lens on the distasteful behaviours of the former footy legends, and makes you question why footballers often sit at the pinnacle of the political, social and cultural hierarchy.

More Than a Game takes a humorous look at how what should be just a game can quickly become all a person has, if not careful.

Where: Star Theatre One at Star Theatres

When: 4 March – 5 March 2022

Duration: 60 min

Tickets: $28.00 (click here to book)

Rating out of 5: 3

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