These Troubled Times

Troy Diana’s comedy These Troubled Times focuses on Charles (John Curtis), an openly gay man who arrives at his brother's family home to babysit his niece and nephew. Upon arrival, strange incidents begin to unfold and he soon finds himself getting more than what he bargained for. 

I found myself stuck in limbo land trying to understand whether this play was a parody or a comedy.

The intimidating black and white image of the dog on the front of the flyer filled me with anticipation with actually what this play was about. I was expecting a sinister dark comedy; an exploration of homophobia that would be intriguing. However, I couldn't have been more wrong! The show heavily relies on theatricality and comedy that is on the verge of being a parody. The arrival of an extremist Christian neighbour, Mrs Raymond – played by Troy Diana – sets this up from the start, with over-the-top gestures and wide eyed expressions I began to think I was getting more than I bargained for. 

I had to put aside the the flyer, it was too confusing with regard to what I was actually seeing. At this point an alien had invaded and the family dog had been thrown at the window. Yes. Really. Images of the family plus boyfriend (Miguel Belmonte) ready with kitchen appliances to take on the extraterrestrial, and the tying up of Mrs Raymond may have mirrored that of any kidnap movie. But it was deprived of energy and I found myself stuck in limbo land trying to understand whether this play was a parody or a comedy. 

Monarch Theatre have an idea here but alterations and changes need to be made to reach an audience, the publicity communicates something completely different and that is why I came away feeling just as confused as I was at the beginning.

Reviews by Lucy Skinner

Underbelly, Cowgate

Where Do Little Birds Go?

Assembly George Square Studios


C venues - C nova

These Troubled Times

Assembly George Square Gardens

Le Haggis


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



The Blurb

A comedic and irreverent exploration of homophobia, religion, and the meaning of family. An openly gay man babysits his niece and nephew but gets more that he bargained for. Then there’s the persistence of his estranged boyfriend, the religion fuelled homophobia of his brother’s neighbour, and the extraordinary arrival of some unpleasant, unwelcome guests. This dark and funny tale proves the most important question of our time is not are we alone, but what happens when we come together? 'Humorous true-to-life writing and excellent performances' (

Most Popular See More


From £29.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Les Miserables

From £22.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £13.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Witness for the Prosecution

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £31.00

More Info

Find Tickets