Alex Williamson: Dumb Things I've Done

Alex Williamson is energetic. He is loud. He is exciting. He is also not particularly funny.

None of Williamson’s jokes bomb catastrophically, but they all feel a little half-baked.

Williamson has been described as a YouTube sensation, and indeed most of his material does feel like it would be better suited to being apportioned out in five minute bursts, vying with cat videos and Buzzfeed for your attention.

There are songs about Internet porn and attempting to chat up older women. Neither are particularly funny. There are no attempts to subvert expectations or set up misdirection, just half-hearted gestures towards shocking the audience which largely miss their target.

Williamson’s spoken material is marginally better, although still relies on shock factor more than anything else. Yet at the same time, he fails to be particularly shocking. Occasionally, there are bursts of misogyny which do annoy me slightly. A lot of women come under fire for being “sluts” and similar, often described with the graphic and enthusiastic imagery of a thirteen year old boy trying to show off to his friends. But I do not find myself laughing at his subversion – his controversy is standard issue stuff, and you could get the same for free standing by the bar of any pub in the world if you go on the wrong night.

None of Williamson’s jokes bomb catastrophically, but they all feel a little half-baked. In the absence of wit or sharp observation, he has edgy and allegedly shocking topics of discussion. Unfortunately I, along with much of the audience, am pretty difficult to shock with such predictable material, and so all his posturing fell on deaf ears. Again, he is irresistibly reminiscent of a thirteen year old showing off to his friends because he knows what sex is. Unfortunately for Williams, for the rest of us got over this novelty years ago, and it is just old news.

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The Blurb

Alex has had a big year. He's starred in a movie, been on TV and continued to sell-out shows across Australia and New Zealand. He's back in Edinburgh again after a short run of sold out shows in 2013, so get along and see why he's one of the hottest comedy and online stars in the world. His online following has kept growing at an amazing rate, now running to more than 1.2 million. ‘Absolutely brilliant’ ( ‘Disturbing and distressing’ (Age).