The problems started right from the word go. The host, Frankie Peoples, opened by making jokes about how last minute this gig was for him and how he was already drunk. Despite at first thinking this was just part of his act, it turned out he actually was plastered. He had no idea what he was doing or who he was introducing and covered up for this by alternating between haranguing and brashly flirting with the audience members. His accent, from Dudley according to some jokes, was essentially incomprehensible, meaning his chances of laughter were minimal.
There were one or two comedians in the show who would be worth investigating. Jay Handles, who managed a great rapport with the audience and seemed like he had actually put some thought into his jokes. If you are on the Royal Mile and see a comedian who looks like Jesus, please check out his show. Another one of the acts, Max Fowler, worked impressions of celebrities into his routine, several of which were very good. The portrayal of Alan Rickman doing karaoke was excellent, but the act would be grating for a whole show.
It was apparent that most of the comedians seemed completely unprepared for the gig and kept looking at their watches. Not as though they were seeing how many more jokes they could fit in but how soon they could slink off back behind the curtain. They simply did not seem to be bothered about their performance, even though they had a good sized audience. However, given that the line up changes nightly, the show you attend at a later date might be miles better than this one.Considering some of the high quality shows on offer from the Free Fringe this year, this was a serious let down.