CHILDREN’S SHOWS – So you think you know about Dinosaurs “deserves 500m stars”


Who better to review kids shows than a kid?

Deadline at the Fringe’s youngest reviewer, 6-year-old Gus, is out with his Dad Paul (42) to give their say on this years Edinburgh Festival Fringe acts.

[star rating =5/5]

“This is definitely the best show at the Festival, it deserves 500 million stars but if you really can’t put 500 million stars then 5 stars will have to do.

“It was inspirational and very very very very interesting. It was so interesting that it was like… A t-rex isn’t the way you think it is from the dinosaur books” – Gus, aged 6.

Image supplied

If you love dinosaurs and you’re only going to see one show this year make it So you think you know about Dinosaurs…?! with Dr Ben Garrod.

In a Fringe full of spectacle and pageantry this is a refreshingly simple show.

Enormous ideas are explored with passion and gentle, self-effacing humour but while it’s pitched at a junior crowd Ben Garrod doesn’t pull any punches with his technical, scientific language.

We get seats right down at the front in the midst of the serious dinosaur experts.

The title of the show has clearly brought out the heavy hitting palaeontologists because even before the house lights go down the chatter around us is heavy with syllables.

Dr Ben takes the stage, introducing himself as an evolutionary biologist with the best job in the world and welcomes us to a show that he tells us will be halfway between a lecture and a pantomime.

Neither term turns out to be accurate though as this experience is too collaborative to be a lecture and too valuable to be a pantomime.

We start with a couple of quizzes, one for the kids and the next for the adults.

Our reviewer Gus (6) was really impressed with Dr Ben Garrod

Unsurprisingly the kids win but we’re all equally confounded as Dr Ben exposes error after error after mistake in traditional dinosaur thinking.

The theme here is scientist as detective and knowledge as an ongoing journey rather than a destination.

The word “probably”has no place here: we’re after facts.

Fifteen minutes in my jaw drops and from that point dino myths are busted left right and centre and we’re hit with a string of exciting new discoveries. FEATHERS?! EXTINCTION??

Since the show, Gus and I have regaled every friend we’ve met, plus bus drivers and baristas, with new revelations and dino facts.

“Did you know that actually…” and “Dr Ben says…” are signals that dinosaur fans should listen up because some serious wisdom is about to drop.

We sit rapt through an hour so jam packed with knowledge and discovery that we feel enlightened and inspired as we applaud at the end.

Nothing will ever be the same again.