Biscuit Barrel: No Time to Digestive is a whistlestop sketch show that ate and left no crumbs. The company is made up of James Horscroft, Alex Denley Smith, Capriella Hooper, Daryl Reader and Poppy Charlton – five incredible performers who are guaranteed to make you laugh. With 69 sketches in just over an hour, you’re taken on a rollercoaster as a murderer makes their way through the show killing off the jokes that don’t land. This added through-line worked well to tie the show together and was an interesting and unexpected narrative to run through a sketch performance.
a biscuit barrel of laughs
I was thoroughly impressed by the sheer amount of material the performers had to remember. All sketches were independent of each other, with a few of these linking to the loose murderer and detective narrative. There were only a few occasions where someone would briefly lose track of which skit they were launching into, but it was always in a way that poked fun at themselves and maintained our attention, so it totally didn’t matter. All of the performers maintained high energy throughout and delivered their lines with great projection and intonation. My only wish would be for them to occasionally slow down their delivery.
I also thought the scheduling of the sketches worked really well. Peppered between the longer routines were one-liners, certain to receive a jovial groan from the audience. It was rapid-fire comedy whose pacy nature truly lived up to its name: no time to digest(ive) the sketch you just saw as another one has started!
One of my highlights was the goalkeeper or crab sketch. An unwitting audience member was invited onstage to guess what one of the comedians was acting as and was rewarded with an awful unforeseen prize. I also loved the twister skit and give kudos to Hooper for her maniacal giggling whilst she was wrapped in the colourful game-mat. A sketch recipe frequently used within the show was characters having a conversation that ended in a sweary rage. We could reasonably gauge that was how the bit would end after a few of these sketches, however the context of each one made it funny every time; so, I welcomed this formula when it appeared.
The biscuit barrel company incorporate facetious humour and witticism into their work and truly deliver an excellent comedy show. This show is a biscuit barrel of laughs and is not to be missed!