Georgina Fuller reviews The Scummy Mummies at The Theatre Chipping Norton, 29th March
Wine, crude jokes, odes to Captain Birdseye, confessions, childbirth and camaraderie. The Scummy Mummies, a London-based comedy duo, treated 200 women (and Phillip, who had got the wrong night but still came back after the interval) to an entertaining and eclectic evening at Chipping Norton theatre last week.
To the uninitiated, the Scummy Mummies, aka Ellie Gibson and Helen Thorn, perform raucous shows across the country for frazzled and flawed mums and also host one of the UK’s most popular parenting podcasts. Recent guests have included Jenny Eclair, Dara O’Briain and Sandi Toksvig. They also have an ever-growing social media following with over 92k followers and a new book out.
They are, essentially, the antithesis of ‘Yummy Mummies.’ Whereas a Yummy Mummy will feed their kids homemade guacamole, take them on a woodland walk and help them learn the violin, for example, a Scummy Mummy will give them fish fingers, teach them how to play Angry Birds and take them to Aldi.
They started the show by congratulating everyone in the audience for getting out of the house and ditching their children’s bath and bed time, which was met with amused applause. There were a series of amusing jokes from asking the audience who was there with their ‘real’ friends and who was there with their NCT friends.
From the song about staying away from the PTA (Parent Teacher Association) to the tune of the YMCA to the one about pre and post kids (“before kids I was hot stuff, then I got up the duff,”) to the Eye of the Tiger, we were treated to a series of Victoria Wood esque songs and sketches, performed in their inimitable shiny lycra body suits.
There was also a Scummy Mummy confessions session where members of the audience were invited to write down their most embarrassing parenting fails to be ranked on the Scumometer (an ironing board.) Some of the ‘cleaner’ ones included hiding in the cupboard with an iPad while pretending to play hide and seek to sending your child into pre-school in pyjamas because you can’t be bothered to argue with them. The winner won a bottle of Scumpagne but I won’t reveal her confessions for as I’m not sure it’s suitable for a family newspaper.
Another sketch included a 101 Room style ditching of all the things the Scummy Mummies hated about parenting, from swimming lessons, passive aggressive Whats App groups to World Book Day.
My friend Tori, who came along for the ride, said she enjoyed the rude songs the most. “It was like one big, laugh out loud therapy sessions for mums, with raw honesty and raucous laughter,” she said.
The Scummy Mummies will be performing in Leamington Spa on the 15th May. www.scummymummies.com