You can trust Yorkshire soap stars to be pudding on the style when it comes to panto.
Coronation Street fugitive Thomas Craig – last seen dead on the floor of Kev’s garage – takes every opportunity to play up his Sheffield roots in his role as villainous Fleshcreep, using the words ‘mardy’ and ‘yer’sen’. He gets down with the kids as he spits out ‘chav’ and ‘minger’ with sheer venom and in his newly-grown beard and silver horns he looks like he would pass an audition as a twisted firestarter for shock’n’roll outfit the Prodigy.
Malandra Burrows (Cathy Glover from Emmerdale) is a bright and bubbly thigh-slapping principal boy who looks like she’s enjoying the panto as much as the kids.
Of the stars, the only one who doesn’t set the stage alight is Sarah Thomas (Glenda from Last of the Summer Wine) whose confused fairy is a tad tedious.
Andrew Ryan’s wonderful panto dame is the best in the business and has legs to die for. He also has the finest wardrobe this side of the Pennines, everything from a Christmas pudding outfit to the shortest dress I’ve ever seen on a panto dame.
Puppets, extremely colourful sets and costumes make this the best panto at the Lyceum for years.