As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – and seeing as the queue for Police Cops is always one of the longest at Assembly’s George Square Studios, it seems that Nathan Parkinson, Tom Roe and Zachary Hunt must be doing something right. The plot and cast of characters is the same, whether the show is taking place in space or 1990s Manchester. Jimmy Johnson is going to be the best damn police cop ever, and not even the unfortunate and unexpected deaths of his nearest and dearest can stop him. He’ll team up with retired cop, Harrison, to take down the evil Hernandez and avenge his fallen family member. Along the way, there will be moonwalking, slo-mo fight scenes, and plenty of unnecessary (but not unwelcome, judging by the audience’s reaction) partial nudity.
Is this formula becoming stale? Judging by the audience’s reaction – non-stop laughter from the moment the lights come up – the answer is no. Police Cops: The Musical introduces even more ridiculous gags and throwaway one-liners than ever before. And, of course, the team have taken their new show to another level with the introduction of original musical numbers written by Ian Coulter. Now, their usual interpretive dances are accompanied by instant classics that make reference to all sorts of bodily fluids (it’s the Fringe okay? No pearl-clutching allowed). Naturally, some scenes are weaker than others; although the group has always poked fun at the stereotypical manner in which the American media treats Mexico, some of the scenes set there don’t feel quite self-aware enough to be truly funny. Overall, however, Police Cops: The Musical is an undeniably strong addition to the group’s existing portfolio.