If you’ve seen anything that A Slightly Isolated Dog has done, you’ve arguably seen all of it, and that is in no way a bad thing. For those who are fans of last years Don Juan, Jekyll and Hyde is more of the passionate, silly, and very French show, but with more tech, more silliness, and a slightly higher level of darkness.
If you love high concept, high effort, low budget comedy, go see Jekyll and Hyde
The core of Jekyll and Hyde is incredibly simple – the audience is introduced to a very French five-man theatre company, French in all the ways you’d expect: Quick to love, extremely passionate, and attracted to literally every member of the audience. They do a satirical take on a piece of classical literature – in this case Jekyll and Hyde – but a very loose adaptation at best. That doesn’t really describe it though. Because the majority of the show is a semi-improvised take on tales told about Mr Hyde, with a healthy amount of audience interaction mixed in with them. There’s stories about Mr. Hyde killing every member of the English Cricket team, tales of him breaking every plate in the Debenham’s crockery department, and tales of him committing petty crimes, like kicking people in the shin.
If this sounds kind of dumb, that’s because it is, and it simply would not work if it wasn’t for the talent and charisma of the cast. Every member of the cast is able to spellbind you with their humor, and is able to come up with brilliant stingers and stories on the spot. They work so hard to make you feel comfortable with what they do, which is extraordinarily important for a show with quite so much audience interaction. They also weave in musical interludes, which are excellent for setting tone- their use of Nicki Minaj and Billie Eilish was especially great.
If there is a problem with the show, it is that there is really one overarching joke in the show – how passionate and French the cast is. It’s funny throughout for me, but if it doesn’t click with you early on it won’t get better. Some of the new set aspects also don’t fully work – the use of a massive sheet to serve as fog is cool, but it’s a little uncomfortable when its sitting on top of your head and obstructs your view a touch too much for my taste. That said, if you love high concept, high effort, low budget comedy, go see Jekyll and Hyde. You will love it.