London Horror Festival – Knock Knock

The laughs just kept coming at the London Horror Festival’s weekend matinée Knock Knock. Presented by the Underground Clown Club and Gavin J Innes, Knock Knock is a helter-skelter romp through five horror genres: Literary, Slasher, Gothic, Ghost story and Sci-fi, kicking off with The Penguin where one Edgar Alan Poe who in the dead of night is troubled by a mysterious bird tapping at the window. Must have been an early draft because I don’t remember the Raven going ‘bwark’ and eating fish.

From there we are transported to Lover’s Lane somewhere in America where an some amorous college kids discover that some serial killers can be very pedantic about how they apply the rules of their trade. Then we accompany The Mob to the vampire’s castle where some of them need a little more persuasion than others about exactly why being a vampire is such a bad thing.

Mad staring eyes beneath a mop of unruly curls Hohn Henry Falle puts on a suitably troubled performance as The Hermit haunted by ghosts who just don’t want to stay dead and then we reach the finale with The Alien condensing the whole of Ridley Scott’s Gothic Sci-fi masterpiece into about ten minutes complete with a musical finale.

It’s knockabout stuff with some great clowning, clever sight gags and sparkling dialogue. The Poe/penguin sketch in particular is just genius, with a suitably madcap performance by Katie Overstall as the manic bird. All this is achieved with little more than a cast of six, some rapid fire costume changes, a few chairs, a rubber axe, a few wooden crucifixes, a toy spaceship and a some puppets and the imagination of the audience. Though to be fair the Alien xenomorph is a bit bigger than your average sock puppet!

Frantically funny knockabout lunacy I give Knock Knock a 555/666

Knock Knock is just one of the delights enjoyed by discerning horror fans at the London Horror Festival. For more details on what to see at the Old Red Lion Theatre leading up to Sunday 28 October visit the LHF website. Nearest tube Angel (Northern Line)

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