The show began as satire. The first five minutes were spent discovering that the priest who’d led prayers was on mute. A great opening scene for, ‘Bumbling Councillors Meet Zoom.’ The mute gag was terrific and occurred repeatedly. Each time it was used everyone seemed genuinely surprised, which added to the joy of it. ‘Are we on mute?’ a truly great catch phrase.
Casting is all important for a show. This show needed a cartoon villain, a well-meaning elderly gent, a pompous young big-head, a council officer who wanted to be somewhere else and a strong group of walk-on parts. Casting did a magnificent job.
The mute gag degenerated into farce. Spending 25 minutes discussing, ‘How to vote!’ tested the patience of the audience. Severe editing was needed. Satire transformed into farce. Those who remained in the audience and loved farce, sensed magic in the air and hung on. They were richly rewarded.
A well choreographed conflict between, ‘Cartoon Villain’ and ‘Pompous Young Big-head’ didn’t disappoint. There’s nothing like teasing abuse to provoke a Cartoon Villain. Damian White did it with flair and a well practised smirk. Now and then he stoked the flames when it looked as if the gag was flagging.
And the winner was… Damian White! Once again he evaded any accountability.
* For the webcast see https://www.bing.com/search?q=havering+council+meeting+webcast&form=ANSPH1&refig=0343091694f646b287e301508ec75146&sp=1&qs=HS&pq=ha&sk=PRES1&sc=8-2&cvid=0343091694f646b287e301508ec75146
1) The first five minutes are the opening gag, which is sort of fun. Then there is 20 minutes of ‘How do we vote?’ which is fun for those who like train-crash humour.
2) If you fast forward to 1 hour 6 minutes the next 20 minutes reveal why Havering is more-or-less dead politically speaking.