The ‘‘icon of the woke era’’ Titania McGrath takes to the stage for the first time as she presents herself in human form, venturing away from her world-renowned Twitter account.
The character, created by comedian and journalist Andrew Doyle, is played by Alice Marshall, who bears an odd resemblance to the computer-generated face that forms Titania’s social-media front.
Elements of this hectic satire are very funny, however, the room tends to be dominated by modest chuckles rather than creasing laughter. Although the script is jammed full of content – including her manifesto (mxnifesto – we cannot be victims of the patriarchy) for her new political party – Marshall is actually at her best when improvising. Her question and answer session proves this, and her reaction to someone walking out is nothing short of brilliant.
Compulsory veganism, decolonising the BAFTA’s and closing down Monsoon are all official policies of the blatantly fascist Shame UK party, whose leader believes that ‘‘heterosexuality is a disease’’. More far-fetched content still made people laugh, although Titania McGrath’s claim that being in the womb is tantamount to rape sees her cleverness descend to utter ridiculousness. Yes, the job of satire is partly to be ridiculous, however, Titania McGrath has grown such a cult following on Twitter for being oh-so-plausible despite being a parody account. Elements of this performance saw the content tilt too far away from what has brought Doyle’s character so much success.
It is a shame that the performance did not end on a high. Marshall embarks upon a rap typical of this high-energy, non-stop performance, displaying a wonderful talent for rapping, but less of talent for comedy – the audience simply cannot keep up.
Whilst this show has its flaws they are by no means enough to detract too much from what is ultimately an entertaining hour which ought to be recommended. Her use of the projector to support her set adds a lot, and her audience interaction is enough to keep you on your toes without feeling forced or being suffocating.
Neither Titania McGrath – nor Alice Marshall – are the finished article, but then who is on their debut? She shows promising signs in her bid to escape the shackles of being hidden behind a keyboard and a set number of characters.
Titania McGrath: Mxnifesto is on at Pleasance Above, (Venue 33)
Until 25th August at 21:10
Get tickets here
Image: Pleasance Press Office