TRADITIONALLY, Aberdeen's annual students' show is a juicy dish - a hearty, old-fashioned revue with corny jokes, slapstick, energetic dancing, and a bulging box office for local charities. Sadly, this year's recipe bears no relation to its heady predecessors, collapsing to the level of the local sacred cows it pokes fun at.

A university education is generally not required to follow a student-show plot, but this one ties itself needlessly in knots. Travellers from the year 2099 go back in time to Aberdeen's millennium celebrations to save the world: along the way there are love affairs, a run-in with a fifteenth-century bishop, and bar brawls in Fittie, the quaint old fishing community of Footdee whose nickname lends itself to the show's title.

This over-complicated plot is, alas, too dependent on dialogue and even jokes about Aberdeen FC, conniving councillors, Doric stalwart Robbie Shepherd, and former Grampian Chief Constable Ian Oliver cannot save it, while a sluggish and over-loud pit orchestra drags down potentially lively

versions of Dancing In The Street, Downtown and Achy Breaky Heart.

The saving graces are few and far between, and found only in Steve Rance's couthy time-traveller Dr Fa and heroine Kyla Lochalsh - played by a gutsy Laura Lamb - along with a clearly enthused cast who get too few chances to pull off show-stopping dance routines. It will doubtless raise the charity cash, but it's such a shame that in every other respect it falls painfully flat.

Until Saturday.