In a venue (The Gelded Baboon) located, appropriately enough, a mere gallstone’s throw from Edinburgh University’s notorious Anatomical Museum, Bankstone News’s nodding acquaintance and culture hero Harry “The Doctor” Brunjes and his old mucker Andrew “The Other Doctor” Johns, are currently lighting up the Edinburgh Festival.

Their brilliantly clinical laugh-out-loud dissection of the psychopathological anomalies that led their co-professionalists Dr Harry Shipman and Dr John “The Bodkin” Adams to abandon any Hypocratically inspired compunction or qualm and go around mass murdering people in cold blood.

Bankstone managing director Dickon Typecast was in Edinburgh and caught this unique cross-breed of medical lecture and theatrical performance, an evening he described as one of the most fascinating and info-taining consecutive successions of 60 minutes he’d ever spent.

Perched Dave Allen like on bar stools, with images projected on a screen behind them, the modern day medical duo regaled a rapt auditorium with the parallel tales of Shipman and Adams, collectively responsible in their own quiet ways for the deaths of more than 200 people, the latter in interwar Eastbourne, the former in more recent Manchester, always a popular spot for multiple murderers.

While Bodkin Adams maintained a lavish lifestyle on bequests from doting victims and Pethidine addicted Shipman killed for the thrill, both men were much loved and respected by the very same people they preyed upon. Riveted from start to finish, Dickon emerged convinced the show would make a perfect hour-long TV documentary.

The show came about, a post-show backstage chat revealed, when Harry and John, old friends from their days as medical students at Guy’s hospital, were chatting over dinner and each revealed their close connections with mass murderers.

Brunjes met an old and dying Adams in the first hospital he worked in (denying any credit, however, for hastening his demise) and now lives in a house that formerly belonged to Adams’ closest friend, a local magistrate.

Johns, meanwhile gave psychological evidence at the trial of Harold Shipman. Remarking strong similarities between these two quiet killers, they decided their two stories would make a fascinating medical lecture or theatrical show or something. And thus Dial Medicine was born.

If you’d like catch this knockout two-man show yourself before its triumphant run comes to an end on the 31st, then maybe that’s what you should do! If you’re not sure and want a bit more background, you can surely do no better than click here to read the last thing we wrote about the polymathematical phenomenon that is Dr Harry “Fingers” Brunjes.


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