Rebus: A Game Called Malice

Rebus: A Game Called Malice was written exclusively for the stage by Ian Rankin and Simon Reade. It is currently making it’s world premier at the Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch in association with Daniel Schumann and Lee Dean.

Without hesitation, a group of City Adventurers eagerly set off to see Rebus brought to life.

The Plot

Six characters in search of a solution…

A splendid dinner party concludes with a game created by the hostess. A murder in a stately home needs to be solved. Suspects, clues and red herrings await. But the dinner-party guests have secrets of their own, threatened by the very game they are playing. And among them is Inspector John Rebus. True crime is his calling – is he playing an alternative game, one to which only he knows the rules?

There is danger with every twist and turn – and a shocking discovery will send this game called Malice hurtling towards a gasp-inducing conclusion.

Our Visit

The play begins with Inspector John Rebus breaking the fourth wall to talk to the audience about reading the room.

With a change of lighting we are back in the room, watching the end of the dinner party and the guests discussing the plot of a murder mystery game. Throughout the first Act we listen to their discussions of the game and learn about their lives. (Spoiler) act one ends with the discovery of a real body!

Act two sees the guests trying to work out who was killed, why they were killed and whodunit. The whole play was well acted by the cast of six.

We all liked the show but were surprised by how short it was. The first half only took 30 minutes and was followed by a 20 minute interval. Checking the website we discovered the running time was 90 minutes. A bit of a shock, especially as we’ve been to a play the night before with a running time of over 3 hours!

Rebus: A Game Called Malice plays from 2 – 25 February 2023


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