Loren O'Brien: Who?

A cross between the mass appeal of Amy Schumer and the niche quirkiness of Jenna Marbles, Loren O’Brien is trying to work out her own identity. Everyone at school forgot they’d met her, no-one could even remember her name: “Loren isn’t even a name!” she laments. Who? is a show that tackles personal identity, fitting in and lying at the opticians.

With this only being her second show at the Fringe, her immediate rapport with the audience is impressive

In contrast to her schooling experience, O’Brien is certainly making a name for herself at the Fringe. The American-Irish comic is bright-eyed and engaging the moment she takes to the stage. With this only being her second show at the Fringe, her immediate rapport with the audience is impressive. Analysing the dynamics of her family members – “I’m so Irish my parents were both ‘O’Brien’s, they get pissed every time I ask them if they’re cousins” - and recalling the embarrassing moments of her youth, O’Brien has a real warmth to her wit.

O’Brien is at her best when in skit-mode, recreating conversations and imitating personalities. If anything, there needs to be more of this, as it’s in these moments that punchlines really hit and O’Brien’s originality excels. The description of her step-dad – who epitomises the uncool parent by playing a pilot simulation game for hours on end in the garden shed - left the audience in stitches. As did the Bridget Jones-­style anecdote where she bumps into her ex-boyfriend and new partner in a restaurant and ends up pretending to be their waiter.

It’s not self-deprecating humour that O’Brien adopts though, she maintains that she’s still a “fucking boss”. There’s filthy humour thrown in for good measure, and the glorious immaturity of the 25 year-old more-often-than-not shines through. While political humour is largely avoided, O’Brien segways from one blowjob joke to the next and definitely leaves the audience gagging for more.

Loren O’Brien just wants to be liked, and unless you’re very averse to “cock-sucking” jokes, you’d be mad not to. 

Reviews by Sarah Gough

Pleasance Courtyard

Loren O'Brien: Who?

★★★★
Gilded Balloon at the Counting House

Ed Gamble: Stampede

★★★★
Greenside @ Nicolson Square

Alice and the Dream Child

Just the Tonic at The Community Project

Mothers

★★★
The Stand Comedy Club 5 & 6

Lost Voice Guy: Disability for Dunces Volume Two

★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

Loren's onto her second show after finishing her successful run on SNL and nationwide tour with Sarah Silverman. Okay, maybe she didn't, but she was named by the Times 'to become one of the biggest female comedy acts this year'. Really? Why? Because, seriously: who is Loren O'Brien? 'A performer with immense personal charisma. Her talent is clear' (Chortle.co.uk). 'This woman is remarkable... The funniest you've ever seen' (BroadwayBaby.com). ‘O'Brien displays a gravitas that is daunting in someone so young' (Stage). 'O'Brien is a force to be reckoned with' (AYoungerTheatre.com).