Fringe hh16k03

Published on July 17th, 2015 | by Niall Norbury


Review: Hey Hey 16K

I had no idea what to expect as sat in The Purple Basement waiting to watch Hey Hey 16K. Alarm bells started to ring when I soon realised I was about a decade younger than most of the audience, and when one person told me: ‘I can help explain the references once it’s over’.

Hey Hey 16K is a half-nostalgic and half-satirical look back to the 1980s from the duo, MJ Hibbert and Steve. However, despite the fact that much the play references a period before I was born, I found myself laughing from start to finish.

Although the play is firmly placed in the 80s – with references to the ZX Spectrum, Duran Duran, and former companions in Doctor Who – it derives most of its humour from jokes about getting older, nostalgia and satire of modern life rather than its setting.

The show is clearly a work-in-progress with wardrobe malfunctions and a few pauses while the duo try to remember the script. However, it is to the credit of MJ Hibbert and Steve that they are able to deftly coast through these mistakes with self-deprecation and humour.

Hey Hey 16K has no aspirations of trying to be a great work of art or dramatic production but it is quite refreshing to see a show which understands its audience and delivers exactly what is expected.

Watching MJ Hibbert and Steve feels like watching your dad perform except that he’s actually funny. Hey Hey 16K is a wonderful mess – funny, silly and disastrous at the same time.


About the Author

is the Editor and Creator of Alt Reading. He works in the voluntary sector supporting charities and community groups in Reading.

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