“The Perplexing Puzzle of the Pedigree Pet and the Policeman”
The latest play-reading in the On The Edge season at Chapter was a rare foray into comedy – Terry Victor’s “The Perplexing Puzzle of the Pedigree Pet and the Policeman”, first produced in 1981, in which supercilious detective Shirley Holmes and her hapless assistant Joan Watson investigate a particularly icky murder. The author also directed, cleverly making a comic virtue of the script-in-hand aesthetic, and the performers Rebecca Knowles (Holmes), Rhian Cheyne (Watson), Liz Gardner (the older Watson, narrator and MC), Natalie Paisey (damsel in distress) and Aled Herbert (stagehand and chief suspect) were obviously enjoying themselves. The play would certainly have benefited from having some of the references updated (the SPG, Sham ’69, etc), and the integration between the old-school and modern elements of the narrative (e.g. the urban riot) seemed a little awkward to me. On the whole, though, jolly fun.