The Lunchtime Club 2011

The Lunchtime Club 2011

In the beguiling little bunker that is the Tron, the Lunchtime Club, class of 2011, are predictably well attended. Compering the gig is scarecrow-headed Suzi Ruffell. Her energetic back and forth with the audience is an excellent mechanism to settle the room and doesn’t commit the arch-faux pas of offending anyone too early... 

Paul McCaffrey: Saying Something Stupid

Paul McCaffrey: Saying Something Stupid

Paul McCaffrey can very much be categorised as an observational comedian. This in itself is not necessarily a problem but considering that comics of this ilk have become, in the last decade, as ubiquitous as Simon Cowell and happy-slapping results in the unavoidable fact that it is an extremely competitive environment... 

Catriona Knox: Packed Lunch

Catriona Knox: Packed Lunch

Upon entering the Wee Coo venue tucked away to the side of the Udderbelly behemoth, Catriona Knox has transmogrified into the imposing Greek waitress that typifies many a holiday to the Med... 

Matthew Highton's Shadowed Vagary

Matthew Highton's Shadowed Vagary

Matthew Highton had absolutely no right to make this an enjoyable show. When a comic steps on their stage and sees 12 audience members littered around a venue that could sit perhaps six times that, a deflated performance should be almost guaranteed... 

Christmas For Two: Friends With You

Christmas For Two: Friends With You

Just Up The Stairs at The Caves is packed to the rafters for this mid-afternoon hour of sketch comedy. Sarah Campbell and Amy Hoggart (formerly of Cambridge Footlights) team up to deliver a wide array of weird, unexpected and often macabre characters... 

Arthur Smith's Pissed-Up Chat Show

Arthur Smith's Pissed-Up Chat Show

While Arthur Smith protests that he’s no longer on the sauce, the format and sheer unpredictability of this concept seem like they were conceived on some booze-addled bender. For though this show is enjoyable in parts, it places almost all its eggs in a very unreliable guest-manufactured basket... 

Dana Alexander: New Arrival

Dana Alexander: New Arrival

Dana Alexander arrives on this side of the Atlantic with a significant reputation, but the venue chosen for Alexander can only be described as ambitiously large for a comic at her first Fringe... 

Gadd, Kirk and Winning: Well, This is Awkward...

Gadd, Kirk and Winning: Well, This is Awkward...

Considering that all the members of this Glaswegian trio are award-winning (and by this I mean prestigious awards like ‘So You Think You’re Funny’ and Chortle, rather than Best in Show at some backwater village fete), I was expecting great things from them... 

Mythbunking

Mythbunking

There is a clear, and very much appreciated Python influence at the start of this show as two hooded monks glide onto the stage humming in a mysterious medieval tone. The hoods are then dispensed with and Dr Glen Eusebius (Tom Williams of YouTube ‘Gap Yah’ semi-fame) and Professor John Porcupig (Matt Lacey) launch into a rip off of Huey Lewis’ ‘Power of Love’... 

Please Hold, You're Being Transferred to a UK Based Asian Representative

Please Hold, You're Being Transferred to a UK Based Asian Representative

While call centres are certainly no stranger to the routines of stand-ups, it is a rarity to find someone from the other side of the fence. But in the charming little backroom of Finnegan’s Wake, Sadia Azmat is parting with all the trade secrets from her time as a call centre operative for a well-known car insurance firm... 

Jen Brister is British(ish)

Jen Brister is British(ish)

I must admit that I’ve never attended a stand-up gig where the audience is implored by the comic to perform the national anthem before commencing. I can’t say it is anything other than decidedly cringe-worthy... 

Puppetry of the Penis: 3D

Puppetry of the Penis: 3D

Many people spend an inordinate amount of their lives fiddling with their penises. Indeed, a significant proportion of those people occasionally derive enjoyment from exposing them to others for comedy value... 

Andrew O'Neill: Alternative

Andrew O'Neill: Alternative

When Andrew O’Neill starts his show with a ditty advising how to cook baby meat, swiftly followed by challenging an elderly woman in the front row to ‘a fight in the rain’, it is obvious that the audience is in for a unique hour of comedy... 

NewsRevue

NewsRevue

Veritable veterans of the Fringe, NewsRevue return with their unique whirlwind tour of the last year’s current affairs. As the turnover of actors and writers is even faster than that of the politicians they deride, one might expect that some troupes would be wide off the mark and as a result, that the act might flounder... 

Zoe Lyons - Clownbusting

Zoe Lyons - Clownbusting

In the rickety, bomb shelteresque ‘Beside’ venue, located deep in the bowels of the Pleasance Courtyard, Zoe Lyons is in typical, yarn-spinning mood. Now she’s 39 (not 40, she is at pains to make clear), her show largely consists in contemplative life assessment, looking as far back to a bizarre yet seminal trip to Glastonbury where her 16-year-old self took ‘magic’ fudge with members of a Kate Bush fan club... 

Matt Kirshen: Wide-eyed

Matt Kirshen: Wide-eyed

If you’d never seen Matt Kirshen before, as he begins his set you’d be forgiven for thinking you were merely watching an overly enthusiastic sound technician, such is his affably nerdish demeanour... 

Jason John Whitehead: Letters from Mindy

Jason John Whitehead: Letters from Mindy

Having enjoyed a couple of drinks before Jason John Whitehead’s show, I became acutely aware within five minutes that I was desperate for a pee. Not wanting to commit the cardinal sin of shuffling across a comedian in full flow’s eye line, I found myself in the unenviable position of sitting through a stand up gig hoping that I wouldn’t be so amused that I might wet myself...