Lloyd Evans

Lloyd Evans

Lloyd Evans is The Spectator's sketch-writer and theatre critic

The grudge-mongers were out in force at PMQs

Grievance fever gripped the house at Prime Minister’s Questions. The grudge-mongers were out in force. Sir Keir Starmer led the charge and asked Rishi Sunak why he refused to scrap non-dom status. The Labour leader answered his own question by explaining that the tax exemption enriches Rishi’s ‘family’. (By ‘family’ he meant ‘wife’, of course, and

There was yet more proof of the SNP’s megalomania at PMQs

‘Sir Softie.’ That’s Rishi’s new nickname for Sir Keir Starmer. ‘Sir Softie,’ he called out twice at PMQs. ‘He’s soft on crime!’ The insult works because it’s easy to remember and pleasantly alliterative. And it builds on an existing perception of Sir Keir as a criminal-hugging lawyer. Sir Keir set out to overturn that impression

Lloyd Evans

Why do theatres hate their audiences?

War has broken out in theatreland. Managements are increasingly at odds with the audiences who fund their livelihoods. A recent stand-off involved James Norton’s new show, A Little Life, which contains a couple of scenes in which the actor removes his clothes. A punter at a preview in Richmond secretly photographed the moments of nudity

A totally unmemorable PMQs for Raab and Rayner

Rishi Sunak missed PMQs to attend Betty Boothroyd’s funeral and a half-empty chamber watched the deputies, Dominic Raab and Angela Rayner, slug it out. Rayner, always a crowd-pleaser, began by hailing the late Paul O’Grady as ‘a true northern star.’ And she had fun with the new crackdown on street thuggery or ‘anti-social behaviour’ as

PMQs proved that we have too many politicians

PMQs drove up a cul-de-sac today. Sir Keir’s team of researchers have discovered a crime blackspot where ten houses have been burgled in the last 18 months, but only one of these offences has ended up in court. This delighted Sir Keir as it gave him a chance to remind the world that he once

Jeremy Hunt’s crafty Budget spells trouble for Labour

Jeremy Hunt was designed to exclude unnecessary body movements. Tall and gaunt, his demeanour faintly bird-like, he worked through his Budget statement at a steady pace, sipping regularly from a tumbler of water. Or was it vodka? No, it was water, of course. Hunt has the air of someone who always waits for the green

PMQs gets ugly over small boats fight

Small boats could be the issue that swings the next election. Photographs of new arrivals being shuttled from beaches to free hotels is a potent symbol of a government in chaos. A country and its borders are the same thing. If the borders cease to exist, so does the country. Voters grasp this instinctively but

Rishi Sunak is starting to enjoy PMQs

A bad day for daffodils. Hundreds of these little golden trombones were cut down this morning so that our MPs could display their bogus affection for Wales. Honestly, sporting a daff on St David’s Day is like clapping for the NHS – a badge of insincerity. The issue of the moment, the Windsor Framework, barely

Lloyd Evans

Approaches perfection: Medea, @sohoplace, reviewed

Winner’s Curse is a hybrid drama by Dan Patterson and Daniel Taub which opens as a lecture by a fictional diplomat, Hugo Leitski (a dinner-jacketed Clive Anderson). Leitski offers to teach us the subtle art of negotiation. An expert diplomat, he explains, must convince each side that they’re the winners in the negotiation and that

The secret truth about Dom: The Play

‘Who wrote it?’ asks the Times, of Dom: The Play. I’ll let you in on a secret: it was me. If you’re selling a product, you need to advertise what you’re flogging, rather than its creator. That’s why, when my satire about Dominic Cummings launched at The Other Palace in Victoria this week, I withheld

Small boats are Rishi’s big problem

Small boats are becoming a big problem for Rishi. Four Tory backbenchers raised the issue at PMQs. Andrew Selous asked about a ‘much-loved’ hotel in his constituency which the Home Office has annexed on behalf of their beloved migrants. Weddings and family parties have been cancelled. Selous, rather ludicrously, asked the PM to ‘redouble his