Was lucky to be invited * to see this at New Theatre Cardiff last night.
I’ve been a Green Day fan since my college days and was looking forward to this for just under a year and it didn’t disappoint.
American idiot was released in 2004, and was inspired by American politics The war in Iraq and George W Bush.
The album American idiot is about how propaganda and what goes on in the media and how it actually shapes the world we live in now.
“Don’t want to be an American Idiot, one nation controlled by the media, Information Age Of hysteria, calling out to idiot America.”
The show starts with a tv, and media reports of 9/11. 9/11 where everyone knows exactly what they were doing that day when the news broke. The first song of the night American idiot, quickly followed by Jesus of Suburbia which seemed what the musical was all about in comparison to the music video just backwards.
We follow the story of three friends, Johnny (Tom Milner), Will (Samual Pope) and Tunny (Joshua Dowen) from Suburbia who go on different journeys to find themselves.
Will ends up staying to look after his pregnant girlfriend and Tunny joins the military and goes off to war. Johnny turns to drink, drugs, has a relationship with whatshername but learns that he doesn’t like the person he’s turning into.
The stage set up was very clever, split into three rooms on two levels, the first level you had the live band and Wills room, then the stage was Johnny’s life! Just spray painted room, go back to the video of Jesus of Suburbia!
St Jimmy. I think we all interpret St Jimmy as someone different, I thought he was all in his head sort of thing, from the lyrics of Jesus of Suburbia. The name he’s given himself when he’s struggling with drugs he’s referenced a lot through American idiot. The musical he’s brought to life, St Jimmy ( Luke Friend) where he’s actually a drug dealer.
“I’m the patron saint of the denial
With an angel face and a taste for suicidal
Cigarettes and Ramen and a little bag of dope
I am the son of a bitch and Edgar Allan Poe
Raised in the city under a halo of lightsThe product of war and fear that we’ve been victimized
I’m the patron saint of the denial
With an angel face and a taste for suicidal“
St Jimmy is Johnny’s bad influence he leads him to hard core drugs alongside drinking.
There was a lot of drug reference, Sex scenes, even though this one there was a lot going on around the stage in general, some naked bums and a lot of swearing!
I thought the one scene of drug taking was very good, Johnny played that part really well, the audience were wincing and just waiting, like you didn’t want to watch but couldn’t look away. That’s when he realised that things had to change St Jimmy died, Johnny sold his guitar to pay his fare and headed home when he met with his friends.
The final song was Whatsername, did these thins just happen or were they all in his head?
The show finished to a standing ovation and Good Riddance.
If you like Green Day, it’s a show not to be missed. All the songs from the album, a live band, brilliant dancing and you can even buy some American Idiot merchandise!
Green Day’s American Idiot is at New Theatre Cardiff until 2nd February 2019. Prices start at £13.00 and you can book here.
It is aimed at over 14’s I think because of the strong language content and drug scenes.
* I was gifted my tickets in exchange for a review.