If you love classic board games, then you are in for a real treat because the detective board game Cluedo, a fan favourite has been made into a play.
This play is a brand new comedic whodunnit. The Hasbro board game has had several versions and has seen many alterations over time. There was also a 1985 hit film called CLUE based on the game itself. This new stage play is directed by Mark Bell who is known for The Play That Goes Wrong, another comedic spoof on stage. This is no different and is just as farcical and nonsensical, however, this only adds to the experience, I could clearly hear the audience in hysterics at almost every other line spoken.
The plot occurs on a dark, stormy evening at a country house where Miss Scarlett, Professor Plum, Mrs Peacock, Reverend Green, Mrs White, and Colonel Mustard arrive at the request of an invitation from Lord Boddy. As the evening continues it is made clear they all have secrets to hide, and as the mystery and hysteria ensue, one by one, guests are killed off, in various rooms with familiar weapons, with everyone wondering who will be next. With the guest’s suspects as much as they are sleuths, the play will have you guessing right until the very end.
The set is cleverly designed to allow the audience to be able to see all the well-known rooms at various points during the production, through the means of cleverly sliding, interlocking doors. The murder weapons, which are featured in the board game are also included, and it is these little details that allow the audience to feel that they perhaps know what will happen, lulling them into a false sense of security. This only makes the ending even more exciting, and surprising.
Cluedo cleverly rolls all the elements into one with a murder mystery full of suspense, drama, and lashings of comedy. It features a stellar cast with much-loved favourite Daniel Casey known for Midsomer Murders taking on the role of Professor Plum, whilst iconic soap star Michelle Collins plays the elusive Miss Scarlett. But for me, the star of the show was Jean-Luke Worrell, who played the role of Wadsworth. Worrell’s comedic timing and delivery was second to none, not to mention the sublime acting skills displayed.
I felt a rush of nostalgia watching this play unfold as it reminded me of my childhood playing the classic game. One could argue that board games are not as popular as they used to be due to the increased use of technological devices. However, over the past couple of years, there has been a clear upsurge in their demand. As a result, many of the younger generations are discovering the likes of Cluedo.
So, if you want to know if it’s Colonel Mustard in the billiard room with a revolver, Professor Plum in the library with a candlestick, or perhaps Miss Scarlett in the kitchen with a dagger then come along to the Alexandra Theatre to find out.
Cluedo continues between Wednesday 4th – Saturday 7th May 2022 at The Alexandra Theatre, Birmingham Box office: 0844 871 3011 https://www.atgtickets.com/shows/cluedo/the-alexandra-theatre-birmingham/
Reviewer: Priya Gupta
Reviewed: 3rd May 2022
North West End UK Rating: ★★★★★