Happy Meal from writer Tabby Lamb is a gloriously nostalgic feel-good fringe must-see.
From the moment we enter the audience are transported back to 90s penguin digital world, meeting the cast during incoming. The soundscape from Eliyana Evans is redolent perfection throughout the show and ensures transition to this millennial world is easy.
The space is dominated by two giant Happy Meal boxes with projections, the use of projection throughout us incredible and enhances audience experience throughout.
Lamb skilfully uses identifiable pop culture throughout to create connection with the audience and ultimately the story. From MSN, Twitter, MySpace, Leeds Fest, Limewire, Busted and loads more were bombarded by references but they never feel forced, just used as a toll to unite.
The plot follows two teens connecting digitally and their blossoming relationship with themselves and gender. The topic handled deftly, sensitively and ultimately with humanity which highlights Lambs understanding of the subject. Particular the sensitive addressing of misconceptions and language faux pa’s is gorgeous to have on stage in such an easy production.
Sam Crerar and Allie Daniel star as Alec and Bette respectively and are a joy to watch. Sweet, funny, truthful and truly engaging. Daniels carry a lot of the comedic moments but really shines in the more sombre sections, complimented by Crerar’s charming openness and raw emotions.
Besides some small projector issues (which I’m sure will be ironed out) this show is a must see. The kind of show where you leave knowing you’ve experienced something special.
Happy Meal runs at Traverse Theatre at 10:30am until 28th August. Tickets can be found HERE!
Reviewer: Natalie Goring
Reviewed: 5th August 2022
North West End UK Rating: ★★★★★