Aaaaargh! It's 101 Jokes in 30 Minutes! Free

The title of Masai Graham’s show gives the impression that it is a grand test of comedic athleticism, hinting at a Tim Vine like mania. It is a little odd then to find that Graham’s delivery makes him look more like a doped up sloth than a stand up Usain Bolt. He is a likeable enough figure with enough good jokes to make perhaps a very strong ten minute set, but spread across thirty minutes Graham struggles to build up atmosphere or momentum.

He is a likeable enough figure with enough good jokes to make perhaps a very strong ten minute set, but spread across thirty minutes Graham struggles to build up atmosphere or momentum.

Graham offers an eclectic mix of wordplay, endearing puns and amusing drawings. However, most of these belong to the ‘groan out loud’ school of comedy. Gags fly thick and slow at the audience, provoking laughter here and there. But they are usually met with tutting, eye rolling and most of all, groaning. There was more groaning in this show than in the last level of Dante’s Hell. While such humour has its charm and everyone in the audience seemed to chuckled at least once, the formula does begin to grate. And once it begins it doesn’t stop.

When Graham tells a solid joke and receives a decent amount of laughter, he then goes onto give that joke some lame twist, and then another, which only serves to squeeze out any possible humour the joke might of had in the first place. He’s at his best when he’s being concise, jumping from one joke to another, not getting bogged down in the details. It is at these moments when we get glimmers of hope, glimmers of what the title promised.

Aaaaargh! It's 101 Jokes in 30 Minutes! Free is not very funny and not what it says on the tin, yet there are some promising elements. Overall this is a bad show marred by a few good jokes.

Reviews by Rory Mackenzie

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Performances

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The Blurb

Award-winning gag merchant Masai Graham delivers over one hundred jokes in just half an hour. Expect puns, one liners and wordplay in this 3.3 laughs per minute bonanza. ‘Annoyingly good' (Gary Delaney, Mock the Week). ‘Flashes of proper genius’ (Chortle.co.uk). Birmingham New Act of the Year 2012.

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