Bananaman Is Back In A Side-Splitting New Musical

Bananaman, Southwark Playhouse ★★★★☆

Bananaman Is Back In A Side-Splitting New Musical Bananaman, Southwark Playhouse 4
Photo: Pamela Raith

What’s striking about Bananaman is how the cast are determined to make sure you’ll have a good time with this incredibly silly yet appealing show. No joke is too old and no gag is overlooked. But along the way they also sing a few good tunes in this new musical by Leon Paris.

You don’t need to know the comic or backstory as the show spends an awful long time on the hero’s origins. But once that’s out of the way there is a sweet send-up of superheroes. A comet knocks out gawky Eric Wimp (Mark Newnham) one evening. And so after eating a banana he turns into a dopey muscle-bound superhero Bananaman (Matthew McKenna).

Photo: Pamela Raith

There are scene-stealing performances by Mark Pickering as Dr Gloom and Carl Mullaney as General Blight. They have evil plans that Bananaman must stop. But they’re so good you’ll secretly wish they succeed.  

The production keeps the cartoon-like quality with its cardboard style sets and lighting. It slips up with its length and repetitive songs, but its hard not to like a show with a talking crow and evil men that serve biscuits to their henchmen.

Photo: Pamela Raith

Bananaman, Southwark Playhouse, Newington Causeway, SE1 6BD, £20-25, until 20 January 2018.

Last Updated 08 January 2018