Lano & Woodley, The Umbilical Brothers / Fecund Theatre, Fallen Angels

Review in Issue 6-4 | Winter 1994

Comic duo Lano & Woodley, or ‘Frank’ and ‘Carl’, winners of the Edinburgh Fringe Perrier Comedy Awards are absolutely fabulous! Their characters have a touch of vintage Hollywood comedians Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy blended with the cartoon characters Tom and Jerry.

Like Stan, Frank is the shy and dependent fall guy. His wish is to have a girlfriend. Carl, dominant and ruthless and hopelessly inadequate, not wanting to confess to being in the same boat as Frank, pretends to have met a girl. The situation triggers off a series of bizarre and comic events, sometimes violent but always funny. At one point they execute a perfectly timed Tom and Jerry styled scenario performed to a soundtrack of a cartoon on TV.

Their cartooning and clownish style of comedy mixed with an original, disciplined and detailed approach to character and character development, resulted in a strong, well rounded and thoroughly delightful performance.

The same cannot be said of Fecund Theatre’s Fallen Angels, a confusing visual performance in which heavily laden text outweighed the action.

Man meets woman and before long she consents to be tortured and killed. The story had to be explained by a performer who periodically addressed the audience with a microphone. This seemed to be the only way of letting us in on the plot, which highlighted the marked absence of a coherent story and weak characters who didn’t seem to develop, but drifted from one scene to another for no apparent reason.

The piece, said the mike man, was about sex and sadomasochism. A performer with a mike, is not enough to hold a story together, least of all one as complex as sadomasochism. The result? A lack of drama, clarity and focus. The core of the subject was missing – What are the motivating forces that lead people into sadomasochistic relationships?

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Oct 1994

This article in the magazine

Issue 6-4
p. 25