Packed full of saucy wenches, indulged aristocrats and pompous hypocrites, Tom Jones is a highly entertaining romp played out with just the right amount of bawdy humour.
Simon Greeves and Sarah Kelly in Tom Jones at the Lion and Unicorn, London Photo: Clare Walsh Imaging for Giant Olive Theatre
At the centre of the action is Simon Greeves in the title role - convincing as the charismatic hero, but with an almost distracting resemblance to comedian Lee Mack.
Although all the cast members are strong and have their work cut out with quick and continual costume/character changes, Kate Mounce in particular is outstanding in a diverse quartet of roles. One minute she is a comic delight as the sour old maid Miss Weston, the next she is domineering and flirtatious as the terrifyingly forward Lady Bellaston. Her versatile performance just goes to show what a talented actor can achieve and her impressive command of accents helps her convey the distinction between the characters even further.
In the newly-renovated setting of Kentish Town’s Lion and Unicorn Theatre, Giant Olive seems to be upping its game in line with the improved surroundings. Edward Kingham’s knowing asides as butler Fielding work well at drawing the audience in and Ross Ericson’s countless comic episodes as an array of guises see him frequently embarrassed and occasionally naked.
It’s not exactly good, clean fun - rather it is jolly, cheeky, deliciously smutty and a very good giggle.