Although they have always had their knitted feet firmly planted on the ground, the Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre have long had their little googly eyes set firmly on the stars.
Previous Sock Puppets shows have been knee-deep with pop culture references. By focusing on sci-fi this time around, they are almost at risk of disappearing completely beneath a fast-paced deluge of geeky — and above all extremely funny — movie and comic-book references.
The show’s shambolic nature is its greatest conceit: the slapdash puppet booth, the rubbish costumes, the frantic ad-libbing and corpsing (especially impressive given this is the work of just one man’s voice and constantly outstretched hands). Yet all this mayhem can’t hide the fact that the comedy on offer here is some of the finest-written and performed on the Fringe.
From the point of lift off, the Socks have the sell-out crowd picking up every stitch of sci-fi related tomfoolery. From (intentionally) toe-curling improv to ‘big budget’ special effects — even a guest appearance from everyone’s favourite Starman, a hilariously parodied geriatric David Bowie.
The biggest laughs probably come from an impression of Peter Capaldi as a foul-mouthed Dalek-battling Doctor in the thick of it, yet the fast-paced hour is filled with more than enough wit, slapstick and innuendo to keep even the stoniest-faced of timelords happy.
Far funnier than two pieces of knitted footwear have any right to be, The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre are well worth blasting off to the Gilded Balloon to catch before their Fringe orbit passes by for another year.
The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theatre – In Space is at the Gilded Balloon at 22:15 until Aug 25.