In this classic eighteenth-century satire, Mr. Puff, a foppish, would-be playwright-critic, invites his literary-minded associates to see a production of his horrendous and nonsensical ... See full summary »

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(play) (as Richard Brinsley Sheridan), (additional dialogue)
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Cast

Episode cast overview:
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Mr. King / Mr. Puff
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Mr. Sneer
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Mrs. Dangle
Norman Rodway ...
Mr. Dangle
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Sir Fretful Plagiary
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Tiburina
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Constable
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Storyline

In this classic eighteenth-century satire, Mr. Puff, a foppish, would-be playwright-critic, invites his literary-minded associates to see a production of his horrendous and nonsensical spectacular, "The Spanish Armada", confident that he has written a great play. Written by Albert Sanchez Moreno <a.moreno@mindspring.com>

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satire | theater | based on play | See All (3) »

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Drama

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Release Date:

23 August 1982 (UK)  »

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1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
High camp at its highest
9 September 2016 | by See all my reviews

When A&E showed this in the early 80s I taped it and then practically wore out the tape. Now it's on Broadway HD and I'll probably wear out their digital file. Like "Female Trouble" and "The Rocky Horror Picture Show," this is a work of high camp of such absolute perfection that I'll never get tired of watching it, and see something new in it every time I do.

Camp has been defined as "a lie that tells the truth" and Sheridan tells it like it is in this play. The same savage industrial politics and pathetic delusions are playing out right now in rehearsal rooms, theaters and sound stages. I've been Mr. Puff and I have to admit that my worst nightmare is ending up as Sir Fretful Plagiary. There are MILLIONS of both of them out there.

Sometimes I think Hywel Bennett went too far over into squeaky crochetiness in his portrayal of Mr. Puff, but that's also like saying Tom Kenny overplays Spongebob. He's written as a caricature and Hywel in his macaroni outfit looks like such a perfect cartoon that it fits that he plays him that way. Anyway it's theatrical tradition: Olivier literally climbed the stage curtain when he played Puff.

If someone asks you to define camp, I recommend you show them this, or, if you're limited for time, show them the final scene in the pageant, from "Rule Brittania" on.


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