The Pleasance Attic on a sunny afternoon is hot, especially sitting in a sold-out crowd. Scanning the room, I can see makeshift fans and plenty of cool drinks. As I didn’t have either, I didn’t know how I was going to be able to survive the hour ahead. Thank goodness then for Alison Spittle.
Spittle had us all right in the palm of her hand
Bounding into the room in a fantastic yellow dress and Midsommar-esque headband, she immediately put a smile on my face. As the material started, the smile got wider – as did many other people’s. As a fan of her appearances on The Guilty Feminist and her Wheel of Misfortune podcast with Fern Brady, I knew we were in for a great show.
The Attic is a great room for creating an intimate atmosphere allowing comedians to connect with their audience. It worked for London Hughes back in 2019, and it certainly worked for Alison Spittle. Around twenty minutes into the show, after a few shudder-inducing sound effects involving her potential X-Men origin story, it was clear the crowd was hooked, with the majority hanging on to her every word. I feel as if there comes a point in every comedy show where the audience gives themselves over to the comedian and trusts them to make them laugh. For me, this was that moment.
My favourite routine came after a peaceful moment, what Spittle called the “opposite to meditation”. The concept of the section, announced somewhat out of the blue to the room, initially struck the crowd as one that they most definitely didn’t want to hear. However, as the material hit its stride, we were all absolutely dying to hear the end of it. With these types of routines, it’s an absolute pleasure to see Spittle coax an audience in with gentle beginnings and then devastate us with some killer punchlines. Suffice to say, we’ll all look at geese very differently from now on. Spittle had us all right in the palm of her hand.
From pregnancy tests to menstrual cycles, aqua aerobics to three lines of cocaine, there’s a lot to like in this hour of comedy. It’s an incredibly polished routine – well thought out and professional. Alison Spittle has created a show where there’s nothing cheap, nothing groan-inducing – just hilarious.