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This is genuine satire, in that it uses ridicule to nail the contradictions of a capitalist philosophy that erects barriers against immigration. The more Jane Wymark’s sharp-suited May blusters about her belief in “an open culture subject to the usual provisos”, the more absurd she becomes. The sketch works because it is full of lethal comedy, and because you imagine it would seriously embarrass its real-life participants if they happened to see it.
Ayn Rand Takes a Stand is David Hare’s clever dissection of free market economics and the limits of freedom of speech, with Ann Mitchell in hilarious, outrageous form as the Russian-born novelist and political operator of the title, making a visit to dispense her wisdom to a British home secretary called Theresa and chancellor Gideon (whose real name is George Osborne).
Now, this’ll light a fire in your belly. There’s something refreshingly old-school about this – five short political satires, including a premiere by David Hare, brought together by touring theatre company Out of Joint into a punchy evening of unabashedly left-wing railing against a Tory-run Britain.
It is — allegedly — an evening of political satire, but it’s one that entirely lacks the biting wit and trenchancy of the best examples of the genre, such as Yes, Minister and The Thick Of It. Malcolm Tucker would be yawning copiously rather than swearing appreciatively here.