Review | Horrible Histories: The Terrible Tudors

By Ilona Cabral


Brace yourselves as your favourite Horrible characters come careering onto the New Theatre Stage! Over 20 years ago Terry Deary began writing his smash-hit series, “Horrible Histories” and since then its popularity has not wavered! The series has inspired a BAFTA-winning Television show, merchandise and a Horrible-histories film is expected this year. Considering this legacy, the stage show production does not disappoint!

In this breakneck production (in more ways than one) the Horrible crew whisked us back to the gory Tudor times and enthralled the audience with the “brutal and bloody”. The production also proved to be just as informative as the books, teaching the kids (and adults) in a gory and giggle-inducing way.

A largely minimalist performance, this production relied on a fabulous wardrobe of costumes; a cart and three actors whose clear chemistry made the show. As they transitioned between slapstick sketches they became kings and queens, narrators and even ridiculous school children.

Then, after the interval, the cast stepped the production up a notch as ‘boggle-goggles’ were handed out and 3D effects added a whole new dimension to the show. Though the effects may have been dated, even I found myself ducking back in my seat as catapulting rocks and flaming debris seemed to career straight towards me.

Terry Deary wrote Horrible Histories to provide a fun alternative way of learning to dull and monotonous history lessons. In this production he succeeded yet again as the audience were thoroughly educated about our history whilst enjoying a giggle. This show has everything a child or adult could desire: blood and guts; pantomime elements and information.

The Terrible Tudor showing will be available until the 16th of March but, if you want to see some more gory antics, “Horrible Histories: Awful Egyptians” will also be showing until this date.