Review: Rubberbandits – Continental Fistfight

Written by: Lindsay Robertson

Soho Theatre (downstairs)

Following two sell-out UK seasons in 2013, not to mention the runaway success of their video Horse Outside (a.k.a. That song off the internet your aunt likes!), the polythene-clad Limerick duo return with an anarchic mix of songs, banter and music videos.


In Continental Fistfight, Blindboy Boatclub (Dave Chambers) and Mr Chrome (Bob McGlynn), are left to improvise as DJ Willie O’DJ (Paul Webb) has foolishly taped over their musical with a documentary about cheetahs. All is not lost however – another copy is on the way, meanwhile the boys have plenty of new material to keep the audience entertained. This includes two recent YouTube hits; Your Dad’s Best Friend (he’s threatening to give your old man the stag night in Amsterdam he never had) and Hey Mister, which dares to ask the burning question “Hipster or Hobo?”

Over the years, the Rubberbandits have evolved into a top class comedy double act. It’s obvious that the show was built around the songs, however the interludes and segues are just as enjoyable. They educate their London audience in the power of “the shift” (clue: it’s something involving your tongue) and describe the confrontation with a cocky schoolboy that led to the inevitable bust-up in Fight Me at Mass. Chrome’s mockery of his partner’s feeble stand-up comedy effort launches Blindboy into his anti-bullying anthem Spastic Hawk – a twisted take on the Ugly Duckling, told only as the Rubberbandits know how.

The lads also touch on controversial subject matter, but it’s all done with silliness and fun. There’s a fantastically muddled re-telling of Irish history, a wistful nod to old-fashioned terrorism (“Do you mind how the IRA used to phone ahead?”) and the issue of a woman’s right to choose (“They were arguing about abortion/so I ran the f**k out of there!”) The show rounds off with a ventriloquist’s dummy replica of Gabriel Byrne singing an up-tempo number about homosexuality. Because why not?

If any of this sounds like your cup of tea then Continental Fistfight is a show not to be missed. Between the intense laugh-to-minute ratio and the sheer amount of energy thrown into the performance, you may well be shocked afterwards when you realise the running time is only sixty five minutes. My jaws ached like I’d been laughing for days.

Feckin’ brilliant!

Author: Lindsay Robertson

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