After a slow start, presumably while the audience members unfamiliar with the show gauged the tone of the production, the show was reliably producing laughs every few minutes. Every tender spot in 21st century politics is tried and tested, from Global Warming controversies to banking crises. The super-up-to-date reference to phone hacking marks just how flexible is the script, constantly tweaked to reflect the changing political culture. It works because the foundations of political satire remain unchanged. Jay and Lynn pinpoint the areas which demolish our trust in politics, and squeeze them to breaking point.
The return of Yes, Prime Minister to the West End this summer shows that it has widespread appeal. Sir Humphrey, Bernard and Hacker are such clear characters, and the political content so up-to-date, familiarity to the 1980s sitcom is totally unnecessary. Adult humour and controversial racial and sexual content make this production unsuitable for anyone under the age of 15. Yes, Minister creates the perfect blend of edginess and farce, thanks to great comic acting from the four core actors, and an expert script.
You can see Yes, Prime Minister at Trafalgar Studios in the West End.