From the moment that the lights dim and a spotlight centres on the Kardiologist (aka Kardashian) clan, Med Revue 2017 sets the scene for an evening that bursts with laughter, a healthy dose of self-deprecating med school humour, and a smattering of catchy song and dance numbers.
Whether you’re in the mood to watch Kanye West transport his slick alter ego to the maternity ward (you’ll be Kanye Blessed), secretly hope to ferret out that elusive Game of Thrones reference, or perhaps just want to enjoy the simple pleasures of an entertaining med student rendition of “Let It Go”, Keeping Up With the Kardiologists offers a wide array of comedic sketches.
The first half of the show grabs the audience’s attention with several playful, stand-out musical performances led by vocal directors Amy Snow and Duncan Therkildsen Jones. Some praise for sustaining the high-energy atmosphere throughout the multitude of skits must also go to the cleverly interspersed, punchy AV sketches directed by Felix Ziergiebel and Rishav Dhakal, which provide a handful of surprisingly refreshing highlights, including the artful “stethoscope Beats headphones” ad, and a Snapchat frenzy over #savinglives with CPR.
However, it is disappointing that by the second half, some of the later sketches are comparably lacklustre and fail to regain the sharp, self-assured confidence of earlier performances. While the band performances directed by Rebekah Kwa and Elisha Burton are enthusiastic and varied throughout, their best piece by far is the opening of the second act, where they present a captivating beer bottle-blowing and percussion symphony.
For the most part, Keeping Up With the Kardiologists promises two hours of unfiltered, gritty, and infectious humour. Perhaps having fewer, yet all-round more polished and smoothly segued sketches would have imparted the show with the ‘oomph’ factor which it narrowly misses capturing.