Written and performed by Jeffrey Jay Fowler and Chris Isaacs
Subiaco Arts Centre
Until October 28
|Chris Isaacs and Jeffrey Jay Fowler|
The adventures of Corgan and Jimmy
Dinky-di tales of two true blue boys…
That mightn’t be exactly how the title song from Barry Humphries’ epochal ’70s satire “The Adventures of Barry McKenzie” went, but it’s appropriate enough for the continuing story of Perth’s BBSF and BBGF. And Now, like Bazza, the fag and the stag have that most satisfying of stamps of public approval – a sequel.
This time the boys are on Australians’ favourite holiday isle, but, of course, like 2015’s hit Fag/Stag, this is no mere romp in an exotic location.
Like its predecessor, Bali is a razor sharp, witheringly witty and technically brilliant take on contemporary Australia, its mores, expectations and hypocracies.
Chris Isaacs’ Corgan (the stag) and Jeffrey Jay Fowler’s Jimmy (the fag) are in Bali for Corgan’s mum’s sixtieth, and Corgan has picked up the tab for his skint friend.
As Polonius would warn you, that’s bound to be a risky proposition, and it gets even more so when Corgan’s GF won’t pick up when he calls her, and Jimmy has picked up a gaucho amigo who comes complete with a crush.
As things heat up around and between the boys, we learn a lot about both of them – and it’s far from fun and games.
It doesn’t pay to be too judgmental, though; if you don’t recognize parts of yourself in Corgan and Jimmy, perhaps you should take a long, hard look in the mirror they are holding up to us.
Isaacs and Fowler are fine writers and polished performers, and they smoothly, and hilariously, pull off the often-tricky feat of telling two versions of the same story simultaneously, like the Rashomon Effect on speed. The acrobatic dialogue, and the laughs, keep coming, even when their darker purpose is revealed.
On the strength of Bali, there’s no reason why, like Martin and Lewis or Hope and Crosby, Corbin and Jimmy, won’t pop up again.
When they do, I’d like to see Corbin given a little more smarts and awareness than he has in Bali; there’s a little gap growing between him and the vivacious Jimmy that could do with closing so he doesn’t become merely – forgive me for this – a straight guy.
But that’s a word of caution, not a criticism; indeed, there’s precious little to criticize in this stellar outing by two of the brightest stars of Perth’s stage.