Review – Best of Edinburgh Comedy
Expectations were high for last night’s ‘Best of Edinburgh Comedy’, however audiences left feeling they had simply been mislead by the show’s title. With an outdoor balmy pub balcony setting, and a relaxed room filled with those hungering for some after work Scottish humor, there’s not an awful lot that can wrong. Or right, if you had to suffer through an evening’s lineup that was on the whole rather unimpressive.
The MC for the evening, authentic Glaswegian Ray Bradshaw, tried to salvage the wreckage, and he did somewhat with chucklesome accounts of afflictions he faces as a six-foot-two redhead. With material that was heavily audience dependent however, and faced with a group reluctantly handing out lifelines to the sprightly Scotsman, the night began feeling labored.
Strained and pitying faces then looked on as Louisa Omielan tirelessly gyrated about the stage telling all us bitches real truths about how sisters keep mistreatin’ their sisters and shared with us her real plight to secure a penis. It sadly felt like being bailed up by tiresome tipsy talker when queueing for the women’s toilet on a night out. Crass can be good when it is done well. This sassy standup only alienated the audience and then wisely made an early exit.
Next up Jack Campbell, English Comedian of the Year Winner 2014, raised the standard appreciably. Young, refreshing and relatable, he was able to fluidly share anecdotes about his Estonian girlfriend, how he has suffered the terrible taunts of his students as a new teaching graduate, and why text-message sign-off etiquette is so important. His conversational style was well received by the audience and with a manner not unlike Australian comedian Josh Thomas, Campbell is one to look out for.
To finish up Ro Campbell roared onto the stage, manically shouting about all that gets him fired up. Sticking his teeth into every dark aspect of Australian society, be it Snowtown or David Hicks’ ordeal, this caustic performance didn’t at all sit well with the noticeably uncomfortable audience. His strangely aggressive and forceful style was exhausting to watch and relied too much on shock-value. Last night he failed to grasp the essence of comedy, which is to make people laugh.