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Matt Forde: Eyes To The Right, Nose To The Left

Note: This review is from 2012

Review by Alex Mason

Matt Forde is a naturally funny performer, with a gift for impressions and an innate ability to ad lib laughs out of thin air without doing anything you can specifically pin down. He excels at audience interaction, which is a shame given the relatively low amount of it.

Despite being a stereotypically fat, sweaty comedian he looks pretty decent for 40. Admittedly he's 29, but that just adds to the charm. Forde's comedic style has elements of both Jason Manford and Josie Long - impassioned about politics but eminently likeable, with an unashamedly working-class spin.

Topic originality is not Forde's strong point and he could do with widening his repertoire; a man as opinionated as this should be bemoaning everything that comes to mind. But it's not a deal-breaker and the material is very engaging with belly laughs to be had.

It's all easy-going and relatively inoffensive, with wit and charm over outrage and filth. He's entertaining, although the trade of easy laughs for opinion isn't going to win everyone over. Gags are more often than not delivered as throwaways in the quest for a greater point.

Flow is everything in this show and when it works it works well, but it's intentionally broken at random intervals by marked segues where he spouts his opinion on a variety of unrelated topics.

The material is nothing earth shattering: politics, gay attraction, the Olympics, and a particularly amusing anecdote about gatecrashing the Tory Party conference as an undercover Labour supporter. All comedic staples, glued together for a show.

Which means Forde is not one for the comedy aficionados –  but he is highly engaging, inherently funny, and comfortably tame without being bland. In short, a safe pair of hands.

Review date: 5 Aug 2012
Reviewed by: Alex Mason
Reviewed at: Underbelly Bristo Square

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