Alexis Dubus: Cars and Girls

As the title may suggest, Cars and Girls concerns Dubus’ geographical and emotional journeys through life, from nude bike rides to broken down cars, in England, Madagascar and the USA. There is certainly a lot of ground to cover. In a story that is in turns unusual and stereotypical, Dubus does an admirable job of sweeping you along with a fond nostalgia for his slightly-younger self.

Dubus is clearly adept at weaving the lines of his narrative in a casual and comfortable way

The small stage and his direct manner of addressing the audience is subtly enticing, and there is a welcome feeling of being, well, welcome. The subject matter and tone suits that of a drink with a few friends, and one can imagine Dubus relating his tales originally in that setting. He has a definite knack for depicting those he meets on his travels in a quaint and affectionate light while never truly claiming to get to root of them. A chaotic music festival that leaves him high and wielding a lightsaber in the American desert is a particular highlight, though the majority of the stories are closer t those of the average backpacker.

Dubus ambles through the show with a knowing smile that is always friendly, nothing near patronising, and succeeds in portraying the more colourful moments of his life as funny-but-that’s-how-it-goes. The humour itself is unpretentious and unassuming, relying on comical events and characters rather than punchlines that run the danger of going flat. The jokes hit just the right point between aiming for laughs and creating a comfortable space where you are free to laugh if you wish. It’s a very easy viewing experience.

Dubus is clearly adept at weaving the lines of his narrative in a casual and comfortable way, although the lines themselves are never particularly innovative and could have been more playful or joke-focused than their current state. Certain points in the narrative attempt to rely on a heart-warming romance that can simply come across as lazy storytelling. Generally, though, the entire show is a consistently enjoyable experience that will leave you in a better mood than when you came in.

Reviews by Henry St Leger

Pleasance Dome

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★★★★
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★★★★★
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★★★★★
Bush Theatre

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★★★★★
Camden People's Theatre

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★★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

The award-winning UK comedian's poetic tales of travel and heartbreak. Contains traces of UFOs, truckers, bean festivals and the Dutch. From the creator of international hit show A R*ddy Brief History of Swearing. ‘An hour of compelling raconteurship… a series of finely drawn escapades and rich characters’ **** (Scotsman). ‘It’s gorgeous; an honest, effortlessly funny hour of yarns about broken hearts, broken vans and broken English... pacy, likeable, consistently engaging' **** (Chortle.co.uk). 'Makes us care in a way that few comedians can' (Fest). Directed by Phil Nichol.