Ticketmaster Summer in Stages

Defending the Caveman

Rob Becker
Leicester Square Theatre
(2009)

Publicity image

Defending the Caveman by Rob Becker first opened in 1991 and has now toured in over thirty countries. With this kind of run, there is no denying the wide appeal of a show like this. However, perhaps this is also the reason it now feels incredibly dated.

Defending the Caveman is a one man show, the one man being Mark Little of Neighbours fame (who has been defending the caveman since 1999), and highlights the many differences between men and women.

Observational humour is always a crowd pleaser as the audience recognises themselves and their partners in Little's portrayal of male and female rituals. However there is nothing new here. Of course it's funny to be reminded of these things but it certainly isn't groundbreaking.

The crux of this show is to highlight that these crucial differences between the two sexes are not a product of the 21st Century: no, they are innate and have always existed. Man - Hunter, Woman - Gatherer and this concept permeates their behaviour. For example the way in which women always want to gather information from her partner, friends, wherever she can get it and then want to share and analyse this information with others. Men on the other hand go straight for the kill. They don't question the people the around them, wasting their words unnecessarily. A man says what he wants without giving it too much thought and when out of words they are happy to merely nod and grunt in approval or disapproval at something.

Of course these are highly stereotyped portrayals of men and women. In fact, considering Little highlights a man's inability to talk endlessly, he has a fair stab at it for the hour and a half the show lasts.

If you like your comedy brash and straightforward then Defending the Caveman may appeal. However for me it is, well now, how would a "man" put it? "Yeah, it was, yeah, no yeah, mmmm, well you know, it was alright".

To 15th March

Reviewer: Rachel Sheridan