Anyone who played Pro Evolution Soccer over FIFA in the early 2000s will know you don’t necessarily need the official licences to have a good time. But in the case of Dinner is Coming – a Game of Thrones-inspired immersive experience at Waterloo Vaults – the lack of endorsement somewhat paints the evening into a corner.
The theatre is hampered by the fact that no serious Throney (if that’s what we’re calling them) is going to take characters such as Jaffrey Bannister or Danny Tarragon seriously.
By dint of this, the play leans heavily into camp, pantomime tropes, with hit and miss results. The aforementioned Jaffrey draws heavily from the subject’s childish, impulsive passions, to great effect.
Jons No, the loutish stereotypical play on the King in the North, however, feels dated and frankly, a little offensive.
NOT SNOW MUCH: Jons No addresses the audience.
The food is another mixed bag. The refined Wildfire Bullion, in which a pea soup is added to Lemon Verbena Jelly creating a great, tactile effect is a promising start.
It’s then let down by a rudimentary, robust roast chicken and lamb, accompanied by pedestrian veg. A solid red wine poached pear crowns the meal.
CROWNING GLORY: The poached pear turned out to be a highlight of the evening.
All told Dinner is Coming fails to satisfy on any count, having little to offer Thrones fans, the theatre is the kind of thing you imagine your dad (who refuses to watch all that dragons nonsense but is insisting you give Mrs Brown’s Boys a go) would take a lot more pleasure out of.
The food shows a little more ambition and in places achieves it, but rarely strays beyond the reach of competent pub fare. The disappointment really hits home when you compare the night with the likes of Secret Cinema. The package feels like a game amateur effort and you can’t help but fantasise about how good this could have been.
Dinner is Coming runs until 2 June at The Vaults.