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Bananaman to make his live action debut this Christmas at Southwark Playhouse

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FOR the first time, Bananaman will be live on stage in Bananaman the Musical. Written and composed by Leon Parris and directed by Mark Perry, it will run at Southwark Playhouse (The Large) from December 15, 2017 to January 20, 2018.

Bananaman, the Man-of-Peel, is a unique member of the superhero ranks. Our handsome hero may have a jaw line you can see from space and sport the snazziest of tight lycra outfits, but this superhero has ‘the muscles of 20 men and the brain of 20 mussels.’ Which isn’t much.

With supervillains Doctor Gloom and General Blight attempting world domination who can we call? Superman’s on holiday, Spiderman’s not picking up – our only option, our very very last option is – Bananaman.

Bananaman began life in the Nutty comic in 1980, and was a flyaway success, transferring to The Dandy before joining the world’s longest-running comic, The Beano in 2012 where he is now one of its flagship characters.

A send-up of the likes of Superman and Batman, he was the subject of the hugely popular TV cartoon that ran between 1983 and 1986 for three series and 40 episodes on the BBC and featured the voices of Tim Brooke-Taylor, Graeme Garden and Bill Oddie from The Goodies.

Fans of the the TV series will remember the iconic opening sequence – “This is 29 Acacia Road. And this is Eric Wimp. He’s a schoolboy who leads an amazing double life. For when Eric eats a banana an amazing transformation occurs. Eric is Bananaman. Ever alert for the call to action.”

With a useless hero and some equally clueless villains, Bananaman’s winkingly clever, delightfully silly humour has been sealed into the memories of those who saw him first, and will now spark the imagination of a new bunch of Bananafans.

Produced by Sightline Entertainment in partnership with Beano Studios, Bananaman the Musical has musical supervision by Alan Berry and set and costume design by Mike Leopold. Assistant director/choreographer is Grant Murphy. Casting has not yet been announced.

For more information visit www.beano.com/.

Tickets: Previews £14, Full £25, Concessions £20. To book, visit southwarkplayhouse.co.uk/.

Times: Monday to Saturday at 7.30pm; Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday at 3pm (no matinee on Sunday, December 17).

Extra Shows: Thursday, December 21, Friday, December 22, Wednesday, December 27, Thursday, December 28 and Friday, December 29 at 3pm.

Also at Southwark Playhouse: Bertolt Brecht’s Mother Courage and her Children, starring Josie Lawrence (November 2 to December 9) and J. M. Barrie’s rarely performed Dear Brutus (November 29 to December 30, 2017).