REVIEW: Joe Pasquale shines as Frank Spencer in Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em at Blackpool Grand Theatre

If you are seeking to forget the cares of the modern world for a couple of hours, look no further.

By Tony Durkin
Wednesday, 11th May 2022, 10:51 am
Updated Wednesday, 11th May 2022, 10:51 am

This stage revival of the much-loved 1970s TV comedy favourite, is a fitting tribute to a BBC show which was immensely popular in its time but stands very much in its own right as an evening packed with fun galore. Joe Pasquale gives a virtuoso performance as leading character Frank Spencer, outrageously disorganised and accident-prone but at heart a loving, caring family man who endears himself to the audience throughout.

Fifty years on from the TV version starring Michael Crawford, Joe makes Frank his own while retaining all the characteristics and mannerisms we have come to know and love and although it was charming to have memories prompted of the original, no prior knowledge of the character and scenario is required.

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Joe Pasquale relishing playing Frank Spencer at Blackpool's Grand Theatre

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Joe Pasquale as Frank Spencer in a scene from the Some Mother Do 'Ave 'Em stage show

But as outstanding as Joe is, the show is an ensemble piece and the performances from all five other cast members were perfectly skilled and also thoroughly engaging and entertaining to watch.Susie Blake, familiar from TV’s Coronation Street and the Victoria Wood Show, is excellent as Frank's mother in law Barbara, while Sarah Earnshaw impresses greatly as Frank's tolerant and sympathetic wife Betty.

Plaudits galore to Moray Tredwell, who was utterly entertaining in his two roles of Mr Worthington and Mr Luscombe, while James Paterson as Father O’Hara and Ben Watson, as cameraman as well as policeman, also played their roles to perfection.

With a wonderfully quick-witted script and brilliant stunt coordination, Guy Unsworth’s production is engaging throughout and packed with one liners, mispronunciations and innuendos, all perfectly delivered - plus some very clever choreography.

The story, written by director Unsworth with input from original creator Raymond Allen, is set in 1973, when the TV show first aired, and memories of the time for those around then are enhanced greatly by a wonderful back catalogue of music from the time.

Joe Pasquale as Frank Spencer

That actually plays an important part in the show, as well as being relayed over the speakers before curtain up to help set the mood. With laughter from start to finish, Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em is highly recommended.

It’s at The Grand until Saturday, May 14, nightly at 7.30pm, with matinees on Wednesday and Saturday at 2.30pm.

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