Comedy, Issue 610

103 articles

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Barry & Stuart: Part-time Warlocks

14 Aug 20085 stars

Part-time warlocks, full-time fun

It's hard to imagine Paul Daniels onstage with a joint that transforms into a gold chain, and there's no danger you'd have caught him magically turning a porn mag into a map of Iraq. Describing themselves as the 'anti-Paul Daniels of magic', these…

Louis CK

14 Aug 2008

Domestic policy

Championed by Ricky Gervais, loved by late-night US TV and censored by his wife, Louis CK is preparing to launch his brand of outrageous confessional comedy on the UK. Claire Prentice finds out just how far he's prepared to go. Louis CK is driving…

Russell Howard

14 Aug 2008

Beat surrender

Russell Howard can't resist a spot of testicular tomfoolery but, he tells Jay Richardson, his new act is less Buster Gonad than Jack Kerouac With his infectious, wide-eyed optimism currently offering a counterbalance to Frankie Boyle's unflinching…

Simon Munnery - Festival veteran

14 Aug 2008

Simon Munnery shares his lessons learned from 21 years on the Fringe

John Pinette

14 Aug 20084 stars

Say yeah yeah to big bad John

Since getting Jerry and co locked up in the grand finale of Seinfeld, John Pinette has spent the last decade making a name for himself on Broadway and in Hollywood. Having worked with the likes of Sinatra, Arnie and Travolta, he may not need the Fringe…

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Pajama Men

14 Aug 20084 stars

Fantastic yet familiar physical horseplay

The Fringe traditionally gets its unfair share of headlines for being a hotbed of nudity and a feast of skin-baring. But two guys in their jimmy-jams before the watershed? What gives? The massively innovative North American double act of Shenoah Allen…

Free comedy

14 Aug 2008

A Pandora's Box of PowerPoint and pointlessness

There is a rebellion at the Fringe this year. High venue costs have caused some artists to take matters into their own hands. Doug Stanhope is charging £7349 for a one-off show in someone's living room and the Free Fringe organisations have brought more…

You Don’t Mess With The Zohan

14 Aug 20082 stars

COMEDY (12A) 112min Anyone who tries to understand Middle Eastern politics based on the contents of an Adam Sandler comedy deserves all they get. Despite his good intentions he bites off more than he can possibly chew in this, his new comic opus. For…

Wild Child

14 Aug 20081 star

ROMANCE/COMEDY (12A) 98min ‘What is this, Hogwarts?’ exclaims bratty Californian kid Poppy (Emma Roberts, niece of Julia) on her arrival at a genteel girls boarding school in England, ruled over by tough-but-fair headmistress (Natasha Richardson).

Festival comedy hitlist

14 Aug 2008

Barry & Stuart, Louis CK, Pajama Men, David O'Doherty, JL Roberts & Nadia Kamil, Jon Richardson, John Pinette, Russell Howard

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Jim Jeffries

14 Aug 20081 star

How to lose your crowd in one horrible hour

No one expects fluffy, cuddly material from Jim Jeffries. The Australian comic is infamous for his potty-mouthed, middle-finger-up comedy, and he'll trash anything - cancer, self-harmers, molested children - as long as it gets a laugh. But unlike other…

Lucy Porter

14 Aug 20082 stars

A set down to its bare bones

While it may have been slightly dispiriting for Lucy Porter to hop out on stage to a less than packed auditorium, there's little in her jovial demeanour to suggest crushed hopes. To spend an hour in Porter's company is akin to having a litre of Jelly…

Seymour Mace

14 Aug 20084 stars

Bible stories told by an idiot

An hour with this Geordie comic won't leave you any the wiser about his love life or neuroses. That's not his thing. He doesn't want to offend his crowd, brag at them or sleep with them, he just wants to share his oddball little world. It's a sort of…


14 Aug 20082 stars

Satire that fails to hit the target

Consisting entirely of up-to-the-minute topical satire skits, this all-singing, all-dancing soapbox couldn't be more contemporary. Yet there's something desperately antiquated about it, something broad and music hall. In theory this is no bad thing.

Alpha Males

14 Aug 20084 stars

Savage indictment of brutish blokes

Last year, our introduction to Victor Legit ended in a shocking explosion of abrasive violence. This time around, the finale from the slightly corrupt but quick-thinking officer of FACT (Federation Against Copyright Theft) occurs in similarly gory…

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Sarah Millican

14 Aug 20083 stars

The young Thora Hird gets down and dirty

Judging by her light Geordie tones, you'd never find Sarah Millican staggering around the Toon with skirt hitched up to her neck, tanked up on Breezers and yelling filthy abuse at anyone with a member. Then again, even though she's been dubbed 'a young…

Wilson Dixon

14 Aug 20083 stars

Ride into a world of deadpannery

Country and western star Wilson Dixon returns to the festival from his native Cripple Creek with songs from albums such as his debut, entitled Greatest Hits, and the subsequent Introducing Wilson Dixon. It's a mellow way to spend teatime, as he regales…

Dead Cat Bounce

14 Aug 20082 stars

Am-dram antics fall flat

There's an old-fashioned feel to this sketch show, which uses the same hotel bedroom as a backdrop for a set of Goons-style skits. Three American sailors on shore leave burst into knee-slapping golly-gee-whizz song at every opportunity, a ginger man…

Damian Callinan

14 Aug 20082 stars

Testicular hour fails to tickle

A visit to the sperm bank must rarely be an amusing experience for anybody, and its comedy value has already been extracted, bottled and labelled by humourists with far greater skill than Damian Callinan demonstrates here. The archetypal Aussie's hour…

Jon Richardson

14 Aug 20084 stars

The mutt's nuts is wearing the cat's pyjamas

Living on your own might be fraught with danger and potential misery, but it doesn't half give a decent comic shedloads of material for a show. And fortunately, Jon Richardson is more than just a decent comic; he's a true star in the ascendant. This…

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Dan Nightingale

14 Aug 20083 stars

Dogging and squirrel-based japery

The outlook wasn't good to begin with. In fact there was a palpable air of terror in the room when Dan Nightingale shuffled onstage apologetically, nervously, and admitting that his first few shows this year had not gone well. But to the audience's…

Sammy J

14 Aug 20083 stars

Puppetry's Hell's Angel rips Disney a new one

Part of becoming an adult, sadly, is realising that life is not going to turn out as you planned, and that a Disney-style happy ending is something that eludes all but a few of us. Not only has Melbourne-based comedian Sammy J realised this, he's only…

The Art of Dating and Dumping

14 Aug 20082 stars

It's official: romance is dead

Ghost tours are annoying because the part of you that secretly believes you may actually see a ghoul, is always let down. This show similarly disappoints. You are drawn to it, suspecting that it may just present you with the holy grail of practical…

Ginger & Black

14 Aug 20083 stars

Dodgy songs and deadly put-downs

Ginger & Black aren't just deadpan. They're the pan that's been buried, left to rot, dug up and smacked about a bit just to make sure. They would grimace at this metaphor, and thereby prove my point. In fact, they would grimace if you composed the most…


14 Aug 20084 stars

Refining a lost art of the commonplace

Less is definitely more with this Irish comic. Although he's playing to a packed house, Jimeoin eschews the customary mic-stand and bellowing delivery and instead wears a discreet ear-piece, talks softly, mumbles quite a bit and relies on facial…