As a belated birthday present, a couple of friends took me to Bristol today to see the musical "We Will Rock You", on the grounds I'm a massive Queen fan and neither of them is capable of building a time machine to take me to see the actual band. And no, that tour with Paul Rodgers does not count. You can't replace the greatest vocalist of the 20th century and expect to get the same magic. Yeah, I appreciate Brian and Roger want to keep touring, but I'm more on John Deacon's side with this one: it's time to stop. Where was I? Oh yeah, We Will Rock You. CliffNotes version: it's the future, Globalsoft run the world, real music is banned and the kids are controlled with computer-generated, bland pop. So it's at least one of the more plausible apocalyptic futures we've seen. The story focuses around our hero, Galileo Figaro; his girlfriend who he names Scaramouche; the evil Killer Queen; the commander of her forces, Kashoggi; and a goddamned filthy hippy named Pop. I don't want to go into too much depth on the story, partly because you can read all that at the Wiki link, but mostly because the show itself doesn't go into too much depth on the story. It really does seem like a crude framework to hang lots of awesome songs onto. Fortunately, it's played for laughs and is thus not as much a problem as such a shallow story would be if played straight. The music is fantastic. You can't go wrong with Queen, and the billboard proclaims the show features 24 of Queen's most popular songs, and it probably does. The downside is there are a couple of what I can best describe as cock teases. At one point, Killer Queen launches into "Don't Stop Me Now," only to be stopped by Kashoggi. Yeah, it gets a laugh, but you can't begin to launch into such an iconic song and then not perform it! I know Brian May doesn't like it, but the rest of us do and we're paying, so play the damn song! We get a few bars of "Flash" during an interrogation scene, but really only enough to go "Oh, I see what you did there." A similar cock tease happens when Galileo attempts to reconcile with Scaramouche whilst the intro to "Love Of My Life" plays. Excellent, good song and quite right for the scene. So why isn't it in the show? Grrrrr. There's a couple of songs left out that would have been quite suitable for the show but I'm guessing weren't used as they aren't as well known. I'm very disappointed that "Machines" wasn't used, as it's a good track and very fitting to the story. The show ends on "We Are The Champions," which I've never found to be a particularly uplifting track. Far better to have gone with "The Hero" which would have been far more suitable. I get that they want to include material people will know, but I think there's enough classic material in the show to allow for one or two lesser known tracks to make their way in. The odd thing is that Act 1 ends with a (pretty poor) fight sequence to an instrumental of "Ogre Battle." That's easily more obscure than "The Hero," and to be honest, not as a good a track as "Machines." I really don't know why they didn't go with Kashoggi singing "Give Me The Prize" instead. It's a more well known song, and it's a pretty damn good fit for the scene if someone bothers to choreograph a decent sword fight. The jokes are pretty good, often digs at modern pop music. The first laugh comes from the opening timeline of rock music, beginning with Elvis then starting a downward trend with "2002 - Simon Cowell sent from Hell to destroy rock." Fair comment, and sets the tone. It's just a shame that the story the jokes and music are hung on isn't up to much. By Act 2, it seems like Ben Elton had pretty much given up on telling a story and just wanted to put some songs on stage. The ending is... well, it's hardly there. Our heroes find the Red Special (and if you have to ask what that is, you probably don't deserve to know, spawn of Cowell), play a couple of songs over the internet and everything's good. O...k... I know this is a light-hearted piece intended to showcase Queen's music, but goddamn, it's as if Elton reached a certain number of pages and realised he had enough pages to call it a complete script. "Well, that's long enough, let's see... er... 'they play a song and the evil corporation is defeated. The end.' Please forward all cheques to Ben Elton, 1 Don't Give A Fuck Avenue, Lazyville." I put more effort into stories I wrote at school. Is it worth seeing? Yeah, as long as you want to be entertained with some cracking music, some jokes and a decent visual show. Don't expect a story that's going to drag you back again and again, just a show that'll make you come home and stick some Queen on the stereo. Would I buy the soundtrack album? No. Really can't see the point of owning cover versions of Queen's stuff when I have the originals. Don't get me wrong, the performers are all good, but they ain't Freddie. So, anyone else seen this or planning to?