Monday, June 11, 2007

Comedy Stuff...

I don't normally do requests but 'Liv asked me to blog about this (I think she is sick of reading about my various plans for people I don't like :p)

As part of my phase 2 'Acknowledging the Existence of London' initiative I have been to a couple of comedy gigs of late. The first went to was Richard Herring's excellently delivered mental breakdown in his Menage a Un standup tour. A lot of the stuff won't be to everyone's taste, he is far from mainstream but he delivers his material so well it is hilarious. Whathe does particularly well in a lot of his stuff is to make a moutnain out of a molehill and vice versa. He thinks nothing of extoling the virtues of marrying Maxine Carr but stretches his displeasure at the French word for potatoe meaning 'Apple of the Earth' to about 20 minutes. I can't do his show justice here because i am not a professional reviewy person, you write things like 'Extoling the virtues of marrying Maxine Carr' and that doesn't sound at all funny, but it is in the context of the show. Just trust me it is very funny.

I also went to the Lyric at Hammersmith last night, barely making the the last train home at the end! the line up was pretty good but i was mainly there to see Richard Herring (compere), Robin Ince, Mitch Benn and Stewart Lee. Even though I had heard a lot of the stuff in his show, RH did a really good job as compere, a family kindly providing material by bringing their 12 year old son to the show and sitting him in the front row. 'You're going to learn some interesting new words today my boy'. Giving the 12 year old a bottle of beer before the interval and saying 'drink this, I'll be funnier in the 2nd half then'.

Robin Ince was pretty good though he was trying some new material I think, and it wasn't suited to a 10 minute slot. I am off to see him in Southampton on Wednesday which i am looking forward to, I'm not at all worried because I have heard some of his stuff on the radio before and he is a very witty man. Mitch Benn was his usual brilliant and loud self, I don't usually like musical comedians but he is without doubt the king of comedy songs. A strong opening with 'I may have to murder James Blunt' and a song about the life cycle of a Boy Band, he was an excellent choice to finish the first half with. Stewart Lee opened the Second half, which I thought was a shame, I think he should have come a bit later. He basically spent 10 minutes breaking down and analysing a comment passed by his mother about a Tom O'Connor joke. It's a lot funnier than it sounds. He was one of my favourite parts of the evening as I've not seen much of his stuff since This Morning with Richard Not Judy (when still partnered with Rich Herring).

There were other comedians there, some less funny than others. I really like A Murray when he isn't doing his Pub Landlord bit but he only doesn't do that when on panel games and the like, his stage show entirely consists of it and I'm finding it a bit tired. It's a shame because he is clearly talented and clever (the Landlord basically parodying the people who are probably his biggest fans) but he's kind of trapped doing this act at the moment. I hope breaks out of it and does some other stuff soon.

Russell Howard was fanatstic, seen him on panel shows etc. but never seen his standup stuff - well worth it, he fit a lot into 10 minutes and the whole house laughed throughout.

So that is my brief synopsis! For the one American who occasionally reads this - I apologise you won't know any of these people but don't worry as I doubt any Brits do either, these aren't really mainstream big name comics.

All in all it was an excellent benefit gig, bumped into someone I met at Richard Herring's gig on Good Friday who helps run the Comedy Bar in Hampshire, it's worth checking out the site and web-stalking her or her partner in crime to your heart's content (the gig on Wednesday is run by comedy bar). Sadly for me, and happily for her I couldn't stay for a drink at the end as I had to go get a train. I've left a lot of stuff out here but the important bits are in as far as I am concerned!

There - you've had a 'What I did' post, back to the unfounded, opinionated ranting.....


Olivia said...

RH does sound funny though - I like rants that last long on some silly topic like potatoe being apple of the earth in french. I've ranted about it myself, but only in a few sentences!

Thanks for the special non-grumbly post!

MattJ said...

Hi solution was to get the entire english speaking world to call Apples 'Potatoes of the Sky', that way when French kids are taught how to say potatoe they will basically be saying 'the apple of the earth of the sky' and make themselves look foolish.

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