Milton Jones On The High Road

Milton Jones enters, characteristically via scooter, clad in a blue print shirt, orange trousers, orange shoes, and hair which defies gravity. He is heckled by a man from Gibraltar and almost as soon as his nationality is revealed Jones informs him that he ‘rocks’. This man is quick-witted, far from egotistical and a comic who will never be caught laughing at his own jokes. Jones’ stage presence is controlled and his mastery of silly accents and funny faces is commendable.

Unable to give away his secret, I can but say something about his style. Jones will begin by saying, in a very matter-of-fact tone, something which at first will strike you as the oddest thing you’ve ever heard. He will then either stare into the audience as if bemused by their presence, or he will shift his gaze from side to side shiftily. After he has timed this manoeuvre to perfection, he will provide the punchline – the totally unexpected, weird, witty-as-hell punchline that crowns him a linguistic lord.

What Jones does with the English language is akin to a child’s treatment of coloured tissue paper. He rips it up and makes confetti out of it for our amusement. Common phrases like ‘my other half’ or ‘the butterflies in my stomach’ have been scrutinised by this inventive mind and - with expert timing - the fruits of this scrutiny are presented to us. Puns, rhymes and sounds of the language are all at Jones’ disposal. A similar treatment is given to images when Jones drags out a projector for the purpose of showing us seemingly nonsensical cartoons, and then explaining their bizarre origins to us. This stuff is clever. Do not be alarmed if you find yourself laughing, belatedly, at a joke Jones told three minutes before. As Jones says, ‘Some of you will only get that one on the way back’, but if this is the case you’ll find yourself chuckling the whole way home.

Milton Jones is an all-round crowd-pleaser. This is totally family friendly, uncontroversial stuff, with a few sneaky, darkly comic jokes that are all the more fun and memorable because they are so rare. This is one-liner comedy at its best and if given the choice between Milton’s way or the highway for an evening out, be sure to take the correct turning.

Performances

The Blurb

Mock the Week, Live at the Apollo and nine radio series. One-liners, pictures, stupid, stupid, stupid. ‘He’s fast absurd, and very funny’ (Radio Times). 'No-one can touch Jones when he hits his stride' (Guardian).