John Robertson: The Dark Room

John Robertson first premiered his maniacal game show The Dark Room back in 2012. Beginning in the dark abyss of Hive Nightclub with a £50 prize and only a two star review from Broadway Baby, it's amazing to see how far it’s come. Progressing from venue to venue, this now cult-classic resides in the grand dining room of Gilded Balloon Teviot Row – and it is truly a comedy feast. High energy, physical and witty John Robertson: The Dark Room sees random contestants (strangely all named Darren) selected from the audience play a texted based adventure game as they seek to find the light switch; find their family and escape the dark room with a chance of winning £1000.

One of the best game shows at the Fringe if not the world

The show is hosted by Robertson wearing what resembles a leftover costume from the set of Mad Max. From the moment the lights go out and he springs onto the stage, you can clearly see his passion and pure enjoyment for hosting and tormenting the souls who are selected to play. His ability to respond with the funniest remarks and pick up on the smallest details is masterful. He is the perfect hype man, keeping everyone engaged and interested in what's happening as well as doing the strangest things to engage with people such as climbing seating scaffolding to reach a contestant or running to the top of the stairs to throw a prize of beans to a contestant. As not many people have won the dark room, every contestant wins something smaller. In the case of this show, it was baked beans in a bag, a box and some random piece of metal. The sheer randomness of these prizes really adds to the crazy and hilarious antics of the show.

Robertson’s dark humour and interactive demeanour is disturbingly entertaining in this addictive and hilarious show and it really is something to behold! The Dark Room is one of the best game shows at the Fringe if not the world. It has cemented itself as a cult classic of the Fringe.

Reviews by Scott Blair

Pleasance Courtyard

Beach Body Ready

★★★★
Underbelly, Cowgate

Fulfilment

★★★
Zoo Southside

STYX

★★★★
Gilded Balloon Teviot

John Robertson: The Dark Room

★★★★
PBH's Free Fringe @ Globe Bar

Sooz Kempner – Mega Drive

★★★★

Since you’re here…

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

'Watching audiences tackle the challenge and fail is one of the funniest sights around, don't miss it' (Daily Telegraph). The audience is trapped in a retro video game with a sadistic, end-of-level boss. Escape and win £1,000 or be brutally murdered by the rest of the crowd! Will you: A) Find the light switch? B) Go north? C) Abandon hope? Brutal, hilarious, innovative. This interactive comedy game show celebrates its 8th year at the Fringe, and it's just as violent and stupid as any other eight-year-old. ***** (ThreeWeeks). ***** (Comedy.co.uk). ***** (Stage).

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