It’s simple maths: if you put enough minuses together, you get a positive. Now consider all the ways in which the premise of Bongo’s Bingo could put you off. Namely the bingo, which is more associated with purple rinses and dentures, plus the added cheesy pop songs that on any other day you’d wish time forgot. A cardboard cutout of Ainsley Harriott (we’re actually confused as to why such a thing exists), plus three bottles of Lambrini and a Sambuca - which, if student days taught us anything, is a sure fire recipe for disaster.
As we settled into our spot, scorecards and dabber in hand, while a veritable whirlwind of drag queens, disco lights and Disney princesses brewed around us, the overwhelming feeling set in that this was not a night at the bingo as any of us knew it.
From Henry Hoovers to fluffy unicorns (we had our eyes on the inflatable Pikachu outfit), the prizes themselves are so bad they are brilliant. The only thing you think will be worth playing for is cash, but before you know it, you’ll be eyes down dabbing your heart out for a box of coco pops - which definitely won’t last long enough for you to take home for breakfast.
Whilst dancing on tables is definitely encouraged, you’ll also be playing six full rounds of real bingo. The only difference is that these rounds feature confetti cannons, impromptu ceilidhs and more glow sticks than a Pendulum concert back in 2004. Oh, and expect to be at the receiving end of ritual humiliation if you get caught out for not playing along - or heaven forbid making a bluff call (though there's nothing like a spotlight and a concert hall of people calling you a d***head to stop you doing it again).
Still confused what you’re actually letting yourself in for? Good! It’s the element of the unexpected that makes the utterly bonkers Bongo’s Bingo such a laugh. Go with your mates, go with your dates, but 100% go. You just might not want to bring your nan - unless she’s into B*Witched.
Bongo's Bingo takes place at Albert Hall, 27 Peter St, City Centre, Manchester M2 5QR. Tickets start from £8.