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Seann Walsh: Fringe 2012

Note: This review is from 2012

Review by Steve Bennett

Seann Walsh, it’s fair to say, is not one of the more alternative voices on the Fringe. He’s a reliable observational comic, apparently being groomed for stardom by his powerful agent through appearances on Stand Up For The Week and Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow.

And in his third Edinburgh hour, he stays true to form, refusing to push the boat out in terms of the subjects he covers. However, it would be impossible to deny his descriptions are always so incredibly spot-on, as proven by the howls of recognition from the young crowd who clearly adore him.

He is technically brilliant, and even the harshest cynic would have to concede that laughs are both plentiful and fairly won. There’s something of the fast-food about him, in that most of the routines that had you chuckling will be forgotten in a few hours; but he’s definitely closer to  the Gourmet Burger Kitchen end of the spectrum than Scabies Steve’s kebab van.

Getting drunk, being drunk, and the consequences of having been drunk are the main themes of the hour, which details with the observational scrutiny of a forensic scientist every aspect of the process, from carrying pints back from the bar, through the evils of Jaegerbombs to clinging to the comforting porcelain of the toilet bowl. Some of this is new light on familiar scenes, while the rest just reinforces what we all know,o n territory already already covered by countless other comedians.

He has style and  charisma, though. His dry voice adds a distinctive delivery, he flicks back his scraggly locks, Billy Connolly-style for emphasis, and has a stage-owning physically as he paces around to spread energy or slumps to the ground to emphasise the lack of it.

Outside the core subject, he tackles the vajazzle, The Voice and his inability to remember people’s names; more very common comedy themes, but on each of them – as with some of his drinking routines – he can be counted on for an exquisitely phrased line or two that elevates them from a mundane fate.

He may be too deeply set on his metier now for us to wish he uses his considerable talent to tackle something more personal or unusual, but for slick, funny observational comedy everyone can relate to, he is guaranteed to do the job. Yes, he’s safe… but not every Fringe-goer wants to, or can afford to, risk their hard-earned on a comedy boundary-pusher.

Review date: 20 Aug 2012
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett
Reviewed at: Pleasance Courtyard

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