Dahl's Tales Are More Ticklish Than Twisted; ALSO PLAYING
Byline: by Georgina Brown
The best of Roald Dahl's adult stories, made famous in the television series Tales Of The Unexpected of the late Seventies and Eighties (you may remember the jangly theme music and the title sequence of a silhouette dancing against a background of flames), involve an unsettling settling of scores.
Revenge is sweet, especially when it has been fermenting away for years. Indeed, a fascinating fact to emerge in Nina Raine's Tiger Country, reviewed above, is that the same receptors in the brain are activated by eating sugary things as by wreaking vengeance.
Jeremy (The League Of Gentlemen) Dyson's stage adaptation gathers some of Roald Dahl's Twisted Tales (Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith, London) *** into a book read by a schoolboy in which three contented commuters have their journey disturbed by a dandified pipe-smoking stranger with a penchant for telling stories.
In The Landlady, a naive lad finds himself staying in a house, smelling of something vinegary, where his deranged hostess has stuffed her dog, her parrot and, rather too predictably, her visitors.
Much more sinister and suspenseful is The Man From The South, in which a whitesuited man with a heavy accent has a bizarre bet with a young man. …