Review: Breaking Dad - Ross O'Carroll Kelly - Paul Howard

I haven't encountered much of Ross with the exception of the odd column or excerpt over the years. Whenever I catch it, Paul Howard's work surprises in its depth and plotting for something that is often regarded as "hilarious" - which it is too.

The play is wrapping at the Gaiety on Saturday night, so this review is neither timely nor necessary. What surprised me about the show was its conventionality; the set-up is a D4 kitchen sink drama for the most part. And it's a very well-made play.

Set in 2022, there are numerous funny references to this future, imagined Oirland. The jokes are not outlandishly speculative, but they do raise a chuckle. The satire is surprisingly subtle.

Ross's daughter Honor orders a Chinese meal in Mandarin, via a touchscreen.

His father Charles is director of elections for Fianna Fail, a septuagenarian Bertie Ahern about to become Taoiseach again. Given local tendencies to forgive politicians who feather their own nests, even this is not such a ludicrous suggestion.

The comedy is very strong - there are gags and quips that are far more impressive that are completely unrelated to this future Ireland.

My disappointment is that it wasn't more of an "event". Entirely my own fault, but newcomers to ROCK may be disappointed by its formal structure - it is a play with a great plot and certain elements of farce, rather than a skit or sketch. It would make a terrific sitcom. (Fingers crossed.)

Great show, thoroughly enjoyable with a fine cast, and highly recommended.