George’s Marvellous Medicine  

by Roald Dahl and adapted by David Wood Published by Samuel French

Review by Peter King

It is enough to make Granny hit the roof.
The depiction of the gin-swilling family ogre who barks out orders between snores will win few friends among senior citizens. But for youngsters bent on dishing out just desserts to ‘horrid old hags’, this politically incorrect piece of drama is just the ticket.
George Kranky is bent on desperate measures when he finds that his Grandma’s unexpected arrival is turning his holiday into the half-term from Hell – and he mixes a medicine designed to remedy her personal failings.
The magic potion proves just the trick and George’s dad is so taken with the idea that he tries the mix on the farm animals – and this is the cue for monstrous mayhem.
Audience participation lies at the heart of this five-hander in two acts. Spectators turned conspirators join in the cry for the ingredients to be added to the revolting recipe and chant with George: Oh Grandma if you only knew/What George has got in store for you.
This new adaptation offers a magic recipe for a year seven class on a Friday afternoon and a wicked idea for a show – but when you send out the invitations, remember to slap on the warning: ‘Not in front of your Nan’.