In these serious times, comedy can be seen as a force of salvation for those finding life tough. Their choice of fun-seeking though may be informed by the exact feeling desired at the end of a show. If you want a comedy gig in which your political activism is triggered by social satirists, then Seymour Mace might not be the comic for you. If, on the other hand, you want to forget your woes and revel in a multitude of silliness, then the Newcastle-born comic actor (he appeared as twins in the Johnny Vegas dopecom Ideal) is exactly the performer you need.
Having made his Fringe debut in 2005 with a frantic and occasionally sinister show about imaginary friends, he’s followed this up with hour-long sets concerning failed superheroes and the contents of the Old Testament from a somewhat leftfield worldview. ‘I just love anything to do with the imagination and escapism,’ notes Mace. ‘I like childish and naïve humour and just being silly. There are too many shows where people are being cerebral or political or satirical and lose their way and end up not being funny. I love silly humour because of growing up with my dad who was an idiot. We used to mess about a lot.’
Clearly Mace Snr had a strongly developed sense of humour given the forename he chose to bestow upon his son. Though it could actually have been a lot worse. ‘It was a choice between Seymour or Horatio or Cornelius, but a lot of people think I’ve made it up because they find it funny. But I like the fact that a lot of Seymours in the media are funny characters. Skinner in The Simpsons, the central character in Little Shop of Horrors, and the guy in Last of the Summer Wine.’ In the light of our ongoing economic woes, the longevity of this Seymour could well match his comic predecessors. (Brian Donaldson)
The Stand, Edinburgh, Thu 9 Jul