Review: Re-Animator, The Musical, Assembly, George Square

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This show may be the very definition of a niche taste. You don’t have to have seen the cult 1985 horror film this is based on, because while there may be a few in-jokes for fans, the musical tells the story straight.


However, you do have to find humour in old 1950s B-movies where earnest scientists in horn-rimmed glasses and their perky girlfriends grapple with rubbery monsters: the “so bad it’s good” idea.

Furthermore, you have to have at least a tolerance, but ideally a liking, for operatic Broadway songs, which carry most of the story.

A young medical student gets drawn into his sinister flatmate’s nefarious, necromantic schemes. Walking corpses, decapitation and repeated cat-killing ensue. Everything is played completely straight and the cast – including George “Norm from Cheers” Wendt as the school dean turned dead man walking – give it their all, rapidly changing scenes with a multi-purpose door.

Yet somehow there isn’t much laughter to be heard, at least at this early performance, except for giggles when the blood and gore is being chucked around (the front seats get soaked but don’t worry, protection is provided).

This is certainly not a show for everyone. But for those whose tastes fall into that exact niche, it could be just their cup of blood.

Until 27 August. Today 10:40pm.