Christian O'Connell: Breaking Dad

Here’s the thing: if you are going to base a stand up show around ways in which you and your father are different, it had better be something pretty special to avoid falling into cliché.

In a city where stand-up comedy can be found in any room fit for human habitation – and indeed many that are not – you could certainly do better with your time and money.

Sadly, Christian O’Connell fails to produce anything particularly ground-breaking. There are the classic “back in the seventies, men were real men” jokes, interspersed with some fairly standard issue stuff about the difficulties of raising children and maintaining a marriage. We also get some none too surprising material concerning his hatred for the teenage boys who will later date his young daughters which feels a little old. At times, O’Connell’s material is so predictable that you can almost recite his punchlines along with him.

Nonetheless, there are some big laughs here and there, and occasional moments of genuine tenderness. O’Connell is at his best when regaling the audience with personal anecdotes. He, unsurprisingly for a radio DJ, is an excellent storyteller and keeps the audience engaged with his amusing asides. His presence onstage is engaging and his interaction with the audience well judged. There is the impression that, had he a better premise, he could produce an hour’s worth of excellent entertainment. Sadly, however, this set misses the mark.

The show is not awful. Only once or twice did I feel the urge to glance at my watch and there are many amusing moments. But in a city where stand-up comedy can be found in any room fit for human habitation – and indeed many that are not – you could certainly do better with your time and money.

Reviews by Charlotte Ivers

The Caley Bar

Blues and Burlesque: Happy Hour

★★★
Just The Tonic at the Caves

The Church of Zirconium

★★★
Pleasance Dome

Hardeep Singh Kohli: Hardeep Is Your Love

★★★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

10-times Sony Award winning DJ Christian O'Connell (Absolute Radio) returns after his 2013 sold out acclaimed debut. O'Connell is a dad on the edge and if you've ever been a dad/had a dad/known a dad, this is the show for you. A show featuring beloved pet death, pensioner sex advice and the inherent evil of Peppa Pig. **** (Big Issue). **** (Herald). **** (BroadwayBaby.com). 'Smart and funny' (Ricky Gervais). 'Furiously funny' (Guardian). 'A natural, warm and charismatic comedian' (Big Issue). 'O'Connell is as engaging live as he is on air' (Scotsman).