Dobbing and Hamdi

This show is billed as ‘an original and refreshingly intelligent two man stand-up showcase.’ There are two men and they do stand up. As for the other statements, Trading Standards might have something to say about that.

Aggressively officious Pete Dobbing corrals the crowd into their seats at the start, forcing them to fill up from the front. When I sit on one of the comfier seats at the rear, due to a lower back problem which I explain to a miffed Dobbing, he tells me if I’m not willing to sit in a hard-backed chair I must go to the back of the queue of people coming in. I reluctantly humour him and find I sit almost exactly where I had been to start with.

This pointless exercise begins what turns out to be another pointless exercise for the next hour.

First up is Welshman Omar Hamdi whose delivery sometimes veers towards that of Michael McIntyre. But unlike McIntyre, less than two minutes in Hamdi had already dropped a string of expletives – which he continued to do.

His topics covered a well-worn and obvious route, but he has quite a lot of energy which a fair amount of the audience seems to enjoy and laugh along with. A bit of audience banter at the start though has a menacing air when he picks on a young-looking teen. A sick royal family quip towards the end of his set quite rightly doesn’t go down at all well with anyone.

They say there’s never a truer word spoken in jest and in the course of his subsequent turn, Dobbing reveals how he enjoys wearing a Bluetooth headset and Lycra shorts while riding his small fold-up bike and that ‘I have trouble focusing at a deeper level.’ Like the audience then, who mainly look bored or actually leave.

The highlight is provided by a drunken bloke who wanders in because he’s looking for his mates Tony and Briony. With perfect comic timing, the bloke says: ‘Oh, it’s the wrong show.’ Cue fits of laughter.

I tried to objectively rate the show despite the ridiculous and unnecessary rudeness Dobbing proffered at the start but my mind often wandered during the hour and I rarely even tittered, let alone guffawed. To make sure it wasn’t just me who thought it had been a poor show, I listened to people’s reactions on the way out. I heard one chap in his early 20s say to his group: ‘That was horrendous.’ It was a sentiment echoed by most of the audience. It wasn’t original, nor refreshing and not particularly intelligent.

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

The Blurb

An original and refreshingly intelligent two man stand-up showcase. Pete Dobbing: SYTYF Finalist, 'Brilliant' **** (ThreeWeeks). Omar Hamdi: 'Warm, confident performer' (Chortle.co.uk), ‘delivered non-stop laughs’ (Surrey Life), ‘Slick, classy, very clever’ (Worthing Herald).

Most Popular See More

Mary Poppins

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Phantom of the Opera

From £27.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £15.00

More Info

Find Tickets