Dave Gibson and Charlie Talbot - Battle of Britain: North vs South

The premise of Battle of Britain is very simple and one that has been done to death: which is the better half of Britain, the North or the South? For the purpose of this exercise we’ll disregard the Midlands. Gibson and Talbot, North and South respectively, lead the audience through several gameshow-type rounds to finally decide who is best. They cover music, food and soap operas amongst others.Gibson and Talbot are competent hosts but sometimes have an awkward stage presence. Gibson is far more relaxed and comfortable with the audience but still not entirely so and it almost feels as though the pair of them are slightly embarrassed by their concept. Rightly so, the links between rounds are just limp place-name puns that, although funny at first, quickly lose their humour. Unfortunately, the puns are clearly the most well-thought-out part of the performance as the rounds become tedious and uninteresting. One is just watching the two comedians drink a pint. The whole show feels like the ideas were far funnier in conception than in the execution. Amidst a barrage of silly accents and 'we say dinner, you say tea' mundanities there are some small glimmers of comic opportunity, but these are quickly extinguished before they can take hold.Possibly the worst thing about Battle of Britain is the high level of audience participation in rounds. When audience members are onstage it is simply not funny but embarrassing and leaves many audience members terrified at the thought of being the next one dragged up to the stage to take part in the show.This show is definitely better after a few drinks. To say that it is the brainchild of two accomplished comedians leaves me wondering why Battle of Britain is so lazily put together. There are a bevy of comic opportunities in the show, few of which are capitalised on. At least when I saw it the North won, so it's not all bad.

Reviews by Stephanie Bartlett

The Blurb

2010 audiences thought North was better than South. Vote for yourself as ‘Eastenders’ battles ‘Corrie’, porkpies battle foccacia and Dave battles Charlie. ‘Talented and charismatic’ (ThreeWeeks).