his is what the fall of empires looks like. It’s the kind of thing that brings forth hellfire and damnation.
Star rating: ****
Venue: Underbelly, Cowgate (Venue 61)
It is despicable, decadent and degenerate. It is Sodom and Gomorrah in a pansexual disco. It is sacrilegious and pornographic and very, very funny.
Lucy McCormick has the moves of Beyoncé, the lungs of Christina Aguilera and the morals of a punk iconoclast. That makes her a triple threat indeed, especially when she decides to retell the life of Christ in the company of her Girl Squad, a two-man entourage whose torsos are as ripped as their tight denim shorts. If you are easily offended, look away now.
With no regard for decorum, moderation or personal safety, she re-enacts the birth of the son of God from the point of view of both Mary and the baby. The arrival of the Three Kings produces a stage covered in instant coffee and meringue. In what may or may not count as feminist revisionism, Mary Magdalene becomes a torrent of female sexuality and desire.
Meanwhile, as Jesus, McCormick tests the scepticism of her doubting apostle Thomas by getting him to plunge his fingers into her every orifice. And I mean every. The actor has claimed to be questioning her own morality in an age when pop culture is the one true religion. Maybe she is doing exactly that – with such anarchic forces at work it’s hard to tell. The show comes across like a warped Nativity filtered through a lens of YouTube neediness and spat out in an X-rated parody of some forgotten religious ritual.
As a comedian she is fearless. As a performer she is reckless. She has no need of our love even as she feeds on our laughter. She is one of the most extraordinary and extreme performers on the Fringe.
We’re all going to hell.
Until 28 August. Tomorrow 8:10pm.