The staff at a betting shop, and their sole punter, find their hands forced in this quirky escapist comedy
Is it a sitcom? A Narnian fantasy? A Tarantino-esque bloodbath? This new play by Mikey Burnett and Joe McCann has not made up its mind and, surprisingly, that’s not altogether a bad thing. The Bookies is an uneven show, but every time you think you have it sussed, it surprises you.
The setting is an Edinburgh betting shop, a once independent business now part of a less welcoming chain. Branch manager Pat (Ewan Donald) thinks he is in line for a star-employee bonus, but his status-hungry boss Michelle (Irene Macdougall), has other ideas. While they talk at cross-purposes, the shop’s sole gambler, injured climber Harry (Antony Strachan valiantly standing in for an unwell Barrie Hunter) sinks his savings into a high-stakes machine.