is a top-level performer, seamlessly switching from smart
wordplay, to snappy ad libs. This is one sequel that works."
Review by Wab Kinew, CBC
Following up on his Fringe play of three years ago, Antoine Feval, UK writer/performer Chris Gibbs once again channels the memories of his great-great-grandfather, Barnaby Gibbs. It seems Barnaby was the bumbling sidekick of Antoine Feval, a Victorian cat burglar who masqueraded as a detective. The story unfolds as the pair go on a thrilling dash through the criminal underground of London.
Chris Gibbs is a born Fringe performer. He inhabits the characters like a master storyteller, and keeps the energy and laughs going throughout. When the audience is stitches just for your soundcheck, it's not a bad sign.
In the end, Gibbs is a top-level performer, seamlessly switching from smart wordplay, to snappy ad libs. This is one sequel that works.
sly, stylish, and highly literate little gem...The writing
is very funny. And the way it comes to life, culminating
in a climactic action sequence through east end London,
has a dizzy intricacy that will make you laugh very hard,
but afraid to laugh too loud in case you miss something."
Review by Liz Nicholls, Edmonton Journal
Four years ago we met Chris Gibbsís Victorian-era forebear, one Barnaby Gibbs, a guileless and worshipful Dr. Watson to a detective of Sherlockian brilliance, Antoine Feval. Barnaby had first met Feval accidentally, late at night upstairs in a London house when the latter was mysteriously shovelling jewels into a sack and attempting to leave through the window. Barnaby naturally leaped to the conclusion that the man must be a detective. A discipleship is born. Barnaby Gibbs is back, the presiding voice and (wide) eyes through which we experience The Further Adventures of Antoine Feval. The show is a sly, stylish, and highly literate little gem, in which the dexterous Gibbs (Chris, that is) does fancy footwork through a maze of asides and delicate anachronisms about the fortunes of a present-day Fringe comic named Chris Gibbs, without ever shattering the elaborate conventions of Victorian storytelling. There canít be a more skilled practitioner anywhere of the odd art of sustaining the joke of the misinformed narrator who spectacularly misapprehends everything in his own story. In confidential tones that not only acknowledge the modern-day audience, but embrace us, our witless protagonist cheerfully acknowledges his own limitations, as he dreams of ďa new life where Iím actually successful at things.Ē The writing is very funny. And the way it comes to life, culminating in a climactic action sequence through east end London, has a dizzy intricacy that will make you laugh very hard, but afraid to laugh too loud in case you miss something.
his distinctive dry humour and deadpan delivery is limitless."
Review By Kevin Prokosh, Winnipeg Free Press
Fringe favourite Chris Gibbs returns in this hilarious sequel to again play his ancestor Barnaby Gibbs, the simpleton sidekick to a suspicious detective named Antoine Feval.
Barnaby is a doltish loser whose limited powers of deduction leave him blind to the fact Feval is the notorious cat burglar terrorizing London.
The 70-minute mystery spoof is all about this Victorian Clouseau, "a man of ample limitations." Not so with Gibbs the performer, whose appeal for his distinctive dry humour and deadpan delivery is limitless. His story is hardly gripping, but the telling is. He will matter-of-factly set a scene and mention an occasional table and then blithely toss off the line, "I don't know what it is the rest of the year."
His abilities as an ace improviser were never more on display than during a recent performance when he had to contend with a baby's cooing and a spectator who fainted on the way to the washroom. The former he gladly ad-libbed into his monologue, while the latter he respectfully worked around to the appreciation of the sold-out house.
well as having few equals as a comic performer, Gibbs is
also a talented storyteller"
Review by Terry Moor, UMFM, Winnipeg
In this sequel to Antoine Feval, Chris Gibbs returns in the role of Barnaby Gibbs, narrating some more of his memories of the time he spent with the great detective Antoine Feval. For those of you who haven't seen the original, Antoine Feval is not really a detective at all. He is a burglar who, despite being caught red handed by Barnaby, manages to convince him that he is in reality a famous detective, thanks to Barnaby's incredible naivety. In this instalment, Barnaby is still labouring under this delusion, and is financing Feval's nonexistent detective agency. Like the original, this is also a very funny play. Barnaby Gibbs and Antoine Feval are wonderful comic creations, and Chris Gibbs gets great comic mileage from Feval's consistent ability to pull the wool over Barnaby's eyes. The plot, though secondary, is absurd and fast moving, adding an element of structure to Gibbs's free wheeling comedy. As well as having few equals as a comic performer, Gibbs is also a talented storyteller, easily drawing the audience into his narrative with his engaging style. Chris Gibbs is as about as close as you can get to a sure thing at the Fringe. You can always count on him to deliver a show that will keep you in stitches, and this show is no exception.