In Defence of Hitler!

This is a time-traveller’s lark in which the two protagonists, Johan and Stefan, travel back in time to 1933 Germany after having had a debate over whether or not they would kill Hitler if they had the option. This interesting debate could have been cleverly brought to stage either as witty satire or a deeper look at the face of evil and how we confront it. Instead it totally falls down in terms of both script and acting.

The redeeming feature was the, at points amusing, Irish-accented and emotionally vulnerable Goebbels.

Johan and Stefan, having unlawfully used a time machine ride to go to off-limits Nazi Germany, knock out two Nazis, take their uniforms, bump into Goering, and are then arrested and interrogated by Goebbels while claiming to be the winners of a competition to dance in front of the Führer. The clerk of the time travel agency arrives with news that assassins are coming from the future to assassinate Hitler, so in order to preserve the space-time continuum the protagonists must join forces with the clerk, Goebbels, Goering, and Himmler to defend Hitler from them. Despite the long discussion on a similar point that the play opens with, once in Nazi Germany the question of the defence of Hitler seems to be remarkably little disputed, the importance of the space-time continuum, and alliance with the worst criminals in history, goes with only a small amount of question. In between all of this Goering shoots one of the protagonists in the head for little apparent reason, and the clerk makes a series of cringe-worthy jokes.

The acting leaves much to be desired throughout from nearly all of the characters, though the extras who play the assassins and anonymous Nazis have good moments. There were nonsensical and borderline sympathetic portrayals of Goering, Goebbels and Himmler, of which the redeeming feature was the, at points amusing, Irish-accented and emotionally vulnerable Goebbels. In fairness this was the first performance, and while the jokes generally don’t land well, a few do, and they, along with the acting, may improve over the course of the Fringe.

Reviews by Joseph Spencer

theSpace @ Surgeons Hall

A Terrified Soul – Macbeth

★★★★
Laughing Horse @ Finnegan's Wake

Ivor Dembina: Old Jewish Jokes

★★★★
theSpace on Niddry St

Private Manning Goes to Washington

★★★★
Sweet Grassmarket

In Defence of Hitler!

★★
Laughing Horse @ Bar 50

Erich McElroy’s (US) Electile Dysfunction

★★★★★
Pleasance Courtyard

Phil Jerrod: Hypocrite

★★★★

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

Location

The Blurb

Meet Johan and Stefan, two students in a cafe arguing over how to fight fascism. They don’t get very far. Instead, they look to test their precious theories by getting some first-hand experience and, Godwin’s Law be damned, who makes a better litmus test than good ol’ Hitler? With some forgivable deus ex machina, our two very likeable protagonists travel in time to 1942 Germany to wrestle with Messrs Goering, Goebbels and Himmler over the fate and soul of the fatherland and, perhaps, through the course of it all, they learn the meaning of true love.

Most Popular See More

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

SIX

From £29.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Wicked

From £31.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Only Fools and Horses - The Musical

From £27.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Hairspray

From £21.00

More Info

Find Tickets