Edinburgh Fringe has a number of shows that have a real cult status among festivalgoers, and up there with the cultest of them is the self-explanatory Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre, written and performed by the one-man-band Kev Sutherland. His shows are among the sillier at the festival, which is obviously saying something. Hiding behind a Punch and Judy-style puppet theatre box, with a very basic-looking sock over each hand, his show is a minimalist gift that keeps giving. He injects real personality into the socks, with witty scripts, ridiculous innuendo and endlessly silly jokes.
If you’ve yet to experience the Falsetto Socks, you’ve yet to complete Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Aside from being a well written show, the highlights are the ad libbing sections, especially when Kev makes a slip up and the socks seamlessly berate each other, occasionally breaking the fourth wall by alluding to the fact that they know they are sock puppets being controlled by a man crouching behind the tartan curtain. If Deadpool were an Edinburgh Fringe show…
The musical elements are fun too, with comedy songs written to well known tunes including Flash, Bang, Wallop!, Lady in Red and Daydream Believer peppered throughout. Look out for the quick costume changes, actual magic tricks and jokes that have the whole audience laughing in unison. It really is a testament to what one man can achieve with two puppets than can do nothing but look around and open and close their mouths, as he juggles between the two distinct personalities effortlessly. They genuinely do have wonderful chemistry together.
It ought to be pointed out that the plot is all but non-existant, taking an approach of a series of circus-themed sketches more than a narrative, and the second half of the show does feel a little overlong. Plus there is a time limit you can listen to one man talking in a falsetto voice and this show does push that to the limit. Despite that, there is a lot of fun to be had from the socks and it truly deserves its cult appeal. If you’ve yet to experience the Falsetto Socks, you’ve yet to complete Edinburgh Festival Fringe. So get thee down and see what all the fuss is about.