I liked Eyes Down For A Full Murray but the setting could have been more fortunate for Susan. Had we gone downstairs, where a full house finished watching the England-Scotland match, I imagine her to have been on fire.
As it was, it was Wednesday 10.30pm in steaming hot black box theatre with a very small audience. So have to give Susan kudos for doing what she could with this new material show.Eyes Down for a full Murray is about Susan’s life: about her family, the things she hates and the random situations that she finds herself in. This theme gives the hour show a vague theme but Susan’s stand-up roots make it pastiche and its work in progress status give it hit and miss puns.
Susan Murray’s sense of humour is brash, loud but most importantly very genuine. The best laughs are the real events she finds funny or has an opinion on. The recognisable anecdotes are hilarious: from her dad’s inability of phone conversation and her mum’s tough love to white wine time travel with the Jesus hangover.
Politically aware, she tells with incredulity how she was booed by Birmingham for telling a Thatcher joke. She blames the Baroness for modern society’s selfishness and problems. Honest and crafty, it is clear Susan can be fearlessly confrontational. She fights for the underdog, taking on big institutions with sarcastic letters when she’s been wronged. The principle of people doing their job properly gets funny when she pushes the boundaries with tongue in cheek.
At times a little chippy perhaps but while she near-apologises for flirting and eating with posh folk, unlike other female stand-ups she never apologises for being a woman nor does she play the gender card. Susan is opinionated on a wide range of subjects and skilled in playing of audience reactions, so I would love to have seen her in a crowd.
I don’t for a second believe that Susan Murray cares hugely about what someone from the wrong side of Walthamstow, still on the other side of 30, has to write about her; but last night she showed her fighting spirit and came out winning. Proof is in the pudding, the show overran a little and I was blissfully unaware.
See the real deal tonight 10.30pm or just remember the name.