Binge Fringe Magazine

REVIEW: Necessary Devil by Knight and Dais Entertainment, Paris Fringe 2020 ★★☆☆☆

This moment was always going to arrive. The moment where a show intended for the stage has to make a move to online streaming, and doesn’t quite hit the mark.

Necessary Devil, pitched as a profound insight into the worlds of religion, politics, conspiracy and evil is brought to us by a man named Luke (you know, from the bible?). While other companies have opted to show off their performances in the form of prerecorded film, Knight and Dais Entertainment had Luke perform from home live to his camera. To be frank, considering this show seems to feed off and rely on audience reactions, this was definitely a bad call.

This confusing Frankenstein hybrid of a spoof TedTalk and stand up comedy does less to entertain and inform and more to provide some (very) light variety to my day. I do however, refuse to go on without acknowledging that Luke’s delivery and qualities as a performer are excellent, but sadly even the very best of performers can do little to save bad writing. The audience is taken on a wild roller coaster of topics and emotions, Luke takes religious and spiritual logic to their extremes, pointing out the hypocrisy in many of societies accepted dimensions. These more broad points are peppered with humorous factoids such as drawing attention to the fact that water is the number one source of drowning and that we all should be connecting with our feminine energy. He also throws us curve balls such as theorising that Jesus was a Canadian woman with a beard, which when you think about it isn’t as far-fetched as you might think.

It’s very easy to see how this show would work with a live audience, infact, I’d go as far as to say this show needs the atmosphere of a live theatre to be brought to life effectively. Unfortunately, I have to review based on what I saw on the day and sadly I have little more to offer that what I have already said. I can see this show being very popular with many people, so although it’s not my cup of tea, who knows it may be yours.

But do make sure to see it live, as it was originally intended.

Mike Dorey

Bristol-based and fascinated by theatre and comedy in all its forms. He has covered a broad range of Shakespeare adaptations - both straight-laced and out-there - as well as taking a firm interest in stand-up comedy, sketch comedy, improvised comedy, music and even reviewing beatboxing. Mike is interested in the intersection of traditional and classical theatre with contemporary Fringe performance. His favourite drink is a vodka-coke (original, right?)

Festivals: EdFringe (2018-2019), Brighton Fringe (2019), Paris Fringe (2020), Prague Fringe (2023)
Pronouns: He/Him