East End Cabaret have quickly rocketed to position as daaahlings of the UK cabaret scene with their unique and frequently hilarious double-act.
This year they return with another hour of filthy chat and dirty songs, and the faithful will lap up Bernie & Victy’s latest escapades with relish. However, latecomers to the East End party may feel a little left out amidst the in-jokes, and Dirty Talk could have a hard time convincing the unconverted.
For those of us in on the conceit of Bernie’s insatiable sexual appetites and Victy’s rather less than conventional hobbies, there is plenty to enjoy here – even if you’re one of the several audience members seduced into taking part in proceedings. But a couple of sequences – in particular a segment where Victy toys with an unconscious Bernie which feels more sitcom than cabaret – rely on such familiarity with the characters that a few audience members looked a little confused as to why everyone else was laughing so much.
The songs are a highlight (most of which have titles too rude to print here) and are works of raunchy comedy genius. If there had only been a few more of these and a bit more background on their sordid lives for the benefit of eager newbies, East End Cabaret could have been onto another filthy five-star winner.
East End Cabaret: Dirty Talk is at Underbelly at 21:10 until 25 August.