The BBC’s smash-hit Would I Lie To You? is universally popular with families up and down the country, so shipping its three star anchors (Rob Brydon, Lee Mack and David Mitchell) out on the road as a triple bill comedy show seems like a no brainer, right?
Wrong. Town To Town falls foul to the absence of the teams of editors and writers, with gags constantly falling flat. Mack and Brydon perform a plethora of clearly scripted gags whilst Mitchel winces in the corner, trying his best to seem as if it is all improvised but failing miserably. The trio discuss various questions with the audience such as ‘Who do the audience think is the best lover of the three?’ There is something rather grimacing about three middle aged men talking about their sex lives whilst sat in the dated, and rather lazy, setting of a gentleman's club.
The second half of the evening picks up in pace as the trio rely less on poorly written pre-prepared gags hosting palpable punchlines but that of genuine audience dilemmas and legitimate off-the-cuff remarks. Prior to the show the audience were tasked with filling out a form with their biggest dilemma in life, for the panel to try and solve during the show. Un-inventively dubbed ‘The Dilemma Game’, the premise is quite simple: Brydon, Mack and Mitchell read out the issue and, after locating the audience member in need, go about solving said issue. Mack is particularly energising in this game, leaping from his chair in a childish brilliance in an attempt to resolve the problems of the Brighton-ers that fill the Dome. A partners untidy you-know-whats causes a particularly awkward interaction with a 92 year old granny, which as the evening goes on becomes even more hilarious. The monotonous rants that David Mitchell is synonymous for, on seemingly irrelevant issues, are unfortunately few and far between and could have been another strength to the show.
Town to Town feels more like the three are simply casting out feelers for a new dilemma based TV game-show than that of anything mildly inventive. The trio each show glimpses of why they are deserving of their household status but, despite a second half revival and promoters billing the night as ‘unmissable’, the evening falls ultimately flat in its energy, creativeness and delivery.