John-Luke Roberts: After Me Comes the Flood (But in French) drip splosh splash drip BLUBBP BLUBBP BLUBBPBLUBBPBLUBBP!!

Hopefully, you know the kind of show you’re in for, with a deliciously meaningless title like this, and crafted surrealism is exactly what is in store. John-Luke Roberts reassures at the beginning of his show, prancing around the stage wearing a felt crown and a green floral moustache, that we are in safe hands, and consistently delivers on this promise.

Like the weird uncle of the Fringe, John-Luke Roberts is always here when you need a reset.

Very early on, he labels jokes as dangerous things, capable of shocking an unexpecting audience, and that he wishes to insulate the crowd from anything unexpected, inverting the structure of early punchlines, to, in theory, provide more predictability. Of course, despite the big reveal, nothing that follows is in any way predictable. Oompa Loompas in bathroom-based relationship quandaries, Rice Krispies hanging out with their less-thought-of relatives, characters trapped inside their own jokes, Scrooge as disturbed gameshow host.

Roberts is a very established performer and delivers a huge raft of accents and characters with a deftness that demonstrates absurdism is now his comfortable first-nature, and he is ready to use it to win over a large and diverse audience. The subject matter is often existential, plunging us at one stage into the abyss and out the other side, where Nietzsche is busy seducing his coffee. Like the weird uncle of the Fringe who has a prescient insight into our deeper, odder identities, John-Luke Roberts is always here when you need a reset.

There are a couple of weaker moments towards the end of the show, where a couple of the character creations ruminate with one another about their lack of deserved exposure throughout the set. It is a neat piece of meta-level writing but tended to distract from the more developed gags in the show, and despite their protestations, I was inclined to think that their side-lining from this strong show was entirely justified.

On the other hand, the recurring appearance of quickly established audience favourite characters was satisfying, and impressive, and brought the deepest laughs of the show. It was at the frantic finale that Roberts demonstrated his skills most comprehensively, running across the stage to ensure that all prior gags got a final, demented, recurring, send-off. An undeniably beautifully formed hour of absurdist madness.

Reviews by Jonathan Mayo

Greenside @ Infirmary Street

The Castle

★★★
Underbelly, Cowgate

Courtney Pauroso: Gutterplum

★★★★★
The Stand’s New Town Theatre

Limmy: Surprisingly Down to Earth, and Very Funny

★★★
Heroes @ The Hive

Joz Norris Is Dead. Long Live Mr Fruit Salad.

★★★★

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 £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

Location

The Blurb

Blam blam! The critically acclaimed idiot returns with a brand-new hour of extraordinary daft-hearted comedy, following a complete sell out at last year's Fringe. 'Freewheeling escapism... a joy' ***** (Fest). 'A hit' **** (Times). 'Impeccably choreographed, giddily inventive, turbo-charged hour' **** (Telegraph). 'Killer gags... glorious idiocy' **** (Guardian).

Most Popular See More

Everybody's Talking About Jamie

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Wicked

From £31.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Lion King

From £45.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Come From Away

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Matilda the Musical

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Life of Pi

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets