>What is London without the theatre? Husband had done some research before we left, and unfortunately our favorite ridiculous musical ever, Return to the Return to the Forbidden Planet, which we saw in some London suburb in August 2001, was not playing. (RTTRTTFP, I shit you not, is based on Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, featuring the same dialogue but updated to the future and set on a spaceship. The soundtrack is 1960s Motown and Girl Group hits and all the actors, including the guy who plays the robot on roller skates, rotate playing all of the instruments and singing. At the end, the audience began batting around giant inflated beach balls.) Worse, it is re-opening in March, so we were just missing it. Husband was disappointed, but found an acceptable substitute: Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens.

Synopsis: “At Saucy Jack’s Cabaret Bar in the dark reaches of the Planet Frottage 3, the evil shadow of the ‘Slingback Killer’ looms. Cabaret artists are being picked of one by one – the heel of a sequined slingback stiletto plunged into their youthful chests. Will the Space Vixens arrive in time to halt the blood-lust and save the day by the power of disco? There’s only one way to find out…” Time Out called it, “A wild and wacky night of plasticry razzmatazz!” (I’m not entirely sure if that is a compliment or an insult, but it is quoted on their ads.)

With characters like Willhelm von Whackoff, Sammy Sacks, Chesty Prospects, Jubilee Climax (played by pop diva Faye Tozer, formerly of Steps – no, I have never heard of that group, but they supposedly had 18 #1 hits and 4 multi-platinum albums in Europe), and Bunny Lingus, how could we go wrong with Saucy Jack? It was almost sold out when we got our tickets before the show. To be honest, I was hopeful, but not expecting much. Then we learned that not only was Saucy Jack a disco musical, but it was also a magic show! How exciting is that!?!?

So the first act did not feature very much magic, and quite frankly, was rather disappointing despite the high level of interaction with/humiliation of audience members. The second act was much improved, and by then the groupies in the audience were completely wasted and heckling Saucy Jack, who highly enjoyed mocking them. Also, the theme sone, “Glitter Boots Saved My Life,” somehow managed to become even catchier the second and third times it was sung. Plus there was much more magic and male stripping, so I would say that it ended on a positive note.

If you are heading to London any time soon, I’m not sure that I could fairly recommend dropping £30 per ticket (like $47!!!!) on it, but Husband and I agreed that Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens was a gazillion times better than We Will Rock You, the painful Queen musical that husband insisted we see in London while we were in London in Sept. 2004. At the least, it is definitely worth writing home about.

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