fri 03/02/2023

Lucy Porter, Cambridge Junction review - making light of a midlife crisis | reviews, news & interviews

Lucy Porter, Cambridge Junction review - making light of a midlife crisis

Lucy Porter, Cambridge Junction review - making light of a midlife crisis

Witty take on life's woes

Lucy Porter's cheery delivery is like she is chatting to friends over a glass of wine

A lot has been happening in Lucy Porter’s life since she last toured. The pandemic we all know about, so she doesn’t detain us to recount her lockdown woes; they get merely tangential mentions in Wake Up Call as she talks about more recent events which included a health scare leading to something of a midlife crisis.

But middle age isn’t all doom and gloom, she explains. Even when bad things happen they can lead to good outcomes (such as the vaue of good neighbours), and it’s the thrust of a show that will lift your spirits – a state of affairs helped greatly by Porter’s positivity and her cheery delivery, which is like she's talking to her friends over a glass of wine.

Actually her friends play a big part in the show, as she describes her close friendship group, women she has known since school, but whose career choices are the polar opposite of hers. They have real jobs, whereas she's “just a clown”. A very good one and, as it happens, one who does a neat physical gag at the top of the show.

She describes the classic midlife crisis that men suffer – Paul Hollywood (brilliantly described as “the bad boy of buttercream”) comes in for some gentle ribbing here – but avers that the behaviour men often fall into, dating much younger women, isn't available to her as she's a married mum. Other men, such as her husband, comic and actor Justin Edwards, have another route available, she says; they can become curmudgeons. Cue knowing laughter from several women in the audience.

Porter then recounts events leading up to her midlife crisis – and the wake-up call of the title – weaving in anecdotes about married life, the pleasures of cheese and the perils of gall bladders, and stories about the nice decorators who gave her living room a makeover.

Porter is an astute observer of human behaviour and, while she could never be described as a political comic, she manages to slyly inject some grit among the lighthearted material, about ageism in television, Prince Andrew and The Daily Mail.

She also mentions how a recent diagnosis of ADHD explains much about the scattiness of her life, and jokes the show may have come out in the wrong order. But no, this is a very well constructed 90 minutes of comedy, peppered with clever callbacks and ending on a great payoff to a gag planted early in the show.

 

Porter is an astute observer of human behaviour

rating

Editor Rating: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)

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