John Robertson: The Dark Room

“You awaken to find yourself in a dark room”, it’s a phrase shouted many times during The Dark Room. When the hour is up you’ll be shouting it with glee like the rest of the audience, old and new fans alike.

Hilarious and daft, chock-a-block with brilliant gags and madcap ideas.

Billing itself as the only live text adventure game, during the hour comedian John Robertson tasks members of the audience to escape the eponymous dark room. Easier said than done, as each option presented leads further into a quagmire of non-sequiturs, homonyms, puns and death.

For those that grew up with the BBC Micro or a Commodore 64, it is an all too familiar adventure of arbitrary grammar and warped logic. If you spent any of your childhood shouting “how the hell do I get this bloody Babel fish” you’ll love this show to bits.

Those that maybe lead a less rickets-fuelled childhood when adjusted will find plenty to enjoy. The idea on its own is fine, but it’s John Roberts presence that really makes the show. His enjoyment of chewing the scenery in character is infectious – impressive considering how long he’s been doing this show. His character is essentially pitted against the audience, he’s the narrator and creator of The Dark Room; his sardonic and often blackhearted comedy is beguiling.

There is a lot of audience interaction and Robert’s is an expert when it comes to dealing with a crowd; in fact he’s famous for dealing with hecklers and plenty of witty off the cuff barbs abound during the game.

It’s hilarious and daft, chock-a-block with brilliant gags and madcap ideas. Robert’s is teetering from cult figure into mainstream success and it's richly deserved. Get yourself a ticket, strap yourself in and be prepared to explore The Dark Room.

Reviews by James W. Woe

The New Theatre

The Voice Factor [X]

★★★★
Smock Alley Theatre, 1662

God Has No Country

★★★★
Smock Alley Theatre, 1662

The Quare Fellow

★★★★★
Gilded Balloon at the Counting House

The MMORPG Show

★★★
Pleasance Dome

Lou Sanders: What's That Lady Doing?

★★★★
Gilded Balloon Teviot

Colin Hay: Get Rid of the Minstrel

★★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

You awake to find yourself in a Dark Room! You, the audience, must choose an option – Will you A) Find the light switch B) Cry for help C) Go North? Come and play a live action, text-based adventure game! It's a choose your own adventure – so choose it! After 4 million YouTube hits, 10 crowd-surfs, 4 death threats and sell-out shows worldwide. Cult hit The Dark Room returns to Edinburgh for it's 5th consecutive run! ***** (FringeReview.co.uk). ***** (Skinny). ***** (ThreeWeeks). 'Not to be missed' (Guardian). 'Don't miss it' (Daily Telegraph).