According to Andrew Ryan, he is a failure. The laughs he elicits suggest otherwise, of course. Referring to his audience as 'lads', this is quintessential Irish stand-up: charming, anecdotal and fast. The rocketing pace is often to Ryan’s advantage as he whips us through his relationship woes, wet towel troubles and Netflix niggles. But sometimes the speed of delivery is to his detriment – many jokes feel rushed and skimmed over. Likening his set to tennis, as he runs to mop his brow every so often, gets a unanimous giggle.
This is a man with word diarrhoea. His constant babble is hilarious.
On this night, we spent the entire act hoping the Spanish couple in the front row could keep up – the same Spanish couple that Ryan enjoyed berating and patronising throughout. Despite garnering a lot of laughs from them, even he seemed to think he’d overstepped the mark by the end: 'I’m sorry, I’ve fucked up the end of my own show, thanks for coming, sorry.'
It all added to the over-arching concept however, this is a 33-year-old 'used to failure'. Ryan’s show tracks his incompetence in most areas of life. A single guy with single beds, he plays the unloved card not for sympathy, but for ridicule. This is self-deprecation and relationship cynicism at its finest.
Ryan is at risk of over-explaining gags now and again; more laughs are had when he lets the audience fill in the rest. But then again, it’s clear to see that this is a man with word diarrhoea. His constant babble is hilarious when teamed with a description of his low self-esteem and paranoia. An explanation of circumstantial evidence, delivered in rushed hushed tones, has everyone howling.
Whether it’s answering back to a police officer or playing the fool at his nephew’s christening, Andrew Ryan’s cheeky chappy demeanour excuses him of any ignorance. If you’re in the mood for light humour and constant cursing, this guy’s your man.