Phoenix Stage Company, Oakville: There are some plays where the lead just can’t be replaced. Take “The King and I” for instance. Yul Brynner was so spectacular in that show that no one else has ever come close to filling his shoes, though many have tried. However, such is not the case for “The Pink Panther Strikes Again.” The Phoenix Stage Company’s Rick Haylon as Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau would make Peter Sellers proud.
On opening night at the Phoenix Stage Company a large cast took on the Blake Edwards and Frank Walkman’s “The Pink Panther Strikes Again.” Adapted by William Gleason, the cast of varying degrees of talent turned the production into a more silly than funny experience, but thoroughly enjoyable nonetheless. Directed by Ed Bassett, the executive director of the Phoenix Stage Company, he focused on the action. The bare bones set, which Bassett also designed, is a smart choice for a play with so many set changes. It’s amazing how functional chairs can be, especially when moved about by pretty in pink pajama-clad panthers. Many of the actors played multiple roles.