“Two beans plus two beans, Baldric. What do they make?”

“A very small casserole, my Lord.”

Thus begins Blackadder II Elizabethan-style, and DCS-style, directed by talented Lower Sixth-Former Ethan Bareham (Dale) and starring Ethan himself as the only character who has not got an IQ of minus 31 in the whole of the Elizabethan world – Edmund Blackadder: a terrific conceit on the part of the writer, Richard Curtis (Four Weddings and a Funeral, About Time – which incidentally also starred our own Will Merrick, OD). Ethan shared the stage with Sydney Davies as Elizabeth I (somewhere between a character from Enid Blyton and  the Sugar Plum Fairy), Fergus Holland as the goon Lord Melchett and George Richards as the hapless and brainless Baldric. Utterly Special Mention must go to a wonderful turn from Matt Candy as the idiotic Lord Percy (looking like a bird who has swallowed a plate). Winsomely delightful cameos gushed forth from Joe Crathorn as the Evil Camp Prince Ludwig, Tom Bradford as the Spanish Inquisition Torturer, Rachel Hellier as the gorgeous Lady Farrow and Toby Greaves (nice skin diseases) and Bella Stephens as Mr Ploppy and Mrs Ploppy (not married – just in case you wondered… but how they did laugh…  the winter evenings just fly by…)

Ethan did a stunning job: comedy is difficult, and his cast delivered a stylish piece with style: a great sense of timing (audiences think this just happens – it doesn’t) and some delicious and detailed characterisation. A hugely popular show – not highbrow, maybe, but you have to know your history and your literature to get all the jokes fully. Great fun and frolics.