Lewis Schaffer is Free Until Famous 18th Year

Lewis Schaffer’s show is called Free Until Famous. That means that if he turns out to be any good, I’m supposed to urge you to go and see him before you have to queue around the block for the privilege. If he’s good but not that good, I’ll nevertheless urge you to catch him now while he’s still free. And if he turns out to be woeful, well, at least it was only mine and the rest of the audience’s time that was wasted.An impeccably-suited Schaffer bustles about the venue getting everyone into their seats, tweaking the lighting and even welcoming himself to the stage. He has the air of a Come Dine With Me contestant, anxiously trying to ensure that all of his guests have a fabulous time.He starts off as he means to go on: by insulting Scottish, English and disabled people. There are two things that Lewis Schaffer couldn’t give and they both begin with F. Tonight he is mostly risible, interspersed with moments of sheer brilliance. Next time, he could be brilliant with moments of garbage. Who knows how the next show will turn out? Lewis Schaffer certainly doesn’t. He recycles old jokes, mangles new ones and sometimes spits out new classics that many of the audience will only grasp when they’re brushing their teeth in the bathroom mirror. With more method and less madness, Schaffer could go far. He won’t though. He’s too long in the tooth for that.Rating one of this New York comic’s show is an arbitrary process as no two shows are the same. Tonight he was a two; tomorrow he could be a five or even a zero, if such a thing is possible. That’s just the way he rolls. This is a man who’s two bad shows away from a psychiatric committal. Laugh, because this is the last time you may see him.Jewish comedians can tread where no other comedians dare set foot - they can tell Holocaust jokes and get away with it. Lewis Schaffer’s Jewish jokes are so close to the bone, they’re hitting marrow. They’re great. Schaffer will always be free because he’ll never be famous, but that’s immaterial. What’s fame ever had to do with funniness anyway? Some of the world’s most mediocre comedians are selling out arenas. Schaffer’s better than that.

The Blurb

Fearless, furious New Yorker. 'Best of the Fest 2010. I can't believe I'm laughing, but I am. The comedy world needs Lewis Schaffer. It just doesn't know it yet' **** (Scotsman). www.lewisschaffer.co.uk