sat 21/09/2019

Comedy Reviews

Andrew Maxwell, Soho Theatre - insightful political comedy

Veronica Lee

“I don't want to talk about Donald Trump,” Andrew Maxwell tells us as he comes on stage at the beginning of Showtime, because no matter what comics make up about the US President, he then goes and does something more weirdly comic, more comically weird, than they could ever invent.

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Chris Rock, SSE Wembley Arena review - energetic and fast-moving performance

Veronica Lee

Chris Rock, another fine alumnus of the comedy factory known as Saturday Night Live, rarely comes to these shores, so his short arena tour was welcome.

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Leicester Comedy Festival Gala Preview Show - going from strength to strength

Veronica Lee

In the early 1990s, a group of students at Leicester Polytechnic (now De Montfort University) staged an end-of-year comedy project. Three of them – Claire Walker, Abi Palmer and Geoff Rowe – developed the idea into what in 1994 became the first Leicester Comedy Festival; Walker and Palmer have gone on to other great things in the arts and Rowe remained as the festival's director.

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Margaret Cho, Hen & Chickens Bristol review - sex and drugs, no holds barred

Veronica Lee

Margaret Cho takes no prisoners: if you don’t like good honest filth or feel uncomfortable around matters of feminism, sex and race, then this Korean-American comic is not for you.

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The Elvis Dead, Soho Theatre review - schlock horror told through Elvis songs

Veronica Lee

A fair few Edinburgh Fringe shows are just that – things that work perfectly in the “let's do the show right here” spirit that permeates the festival, in a tiny (and often grotty) venue that adds hugely to the vibe. That's all well and good during August, of course, but come later in the year when a show moves beyond the festival confines it can lose much of its spark.

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Natalie Palamides, Soho Theatre review - delightful and disturbing show about motherhood

Veronica Lee

It's not often the publicity material for a comedy show has a health advisory attached.

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John Bishop, O2 review - Everyman comedy with a hint of subversion

Veronica Lee

John Bishop was last on tour three years ago and he tells us that this show, Winging It, was inspired by two things that happened in the intervening period. Not the obvious Brexit (although it does make an appearance), but in that time he has passed the 50 landmark and his three sons have all left home.

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Kerry Godliman, Touring review - affable and down-to-earth humour

Veronica Lee

Kerry Godliman is such an affable and down-to-earth onstage presence that when she talks about whether she should move now that her area has upped and come – you can tell by the local baker making sourdough loaves – you think how much her neighbours would miss her.

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Mat Ewins, Soho Theatre review - multimedia show with twists in the tale

Veronica Lee

Mat Ewins comes on stage with a bullet belt slung across his chest. Indiana Jones he ain't, but what follows is a spoof on that film genre, a convoluted narrative that makes little sense but has a large degree of bombast as the show's title, Mat Ewins: Presents Adventureman 7 – the Return of Adventureman, suggests.

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Ahir Shah, Soho Theatre - a bravura response to Brexit vote

Veronica Lee

There were a lot of shocked and disappointed people after the EU referendum last year and several comics have used the result to fashion some good comedy, delivering state-of-the-nation material in their shows. For Ahir Shah, though, the more he thought about the result, the more he took it personally.

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