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Pete Johansson: Naked Pictures Of My Life
Canadian and American headliner Pete Johansson discusses what he feels, when he feels it in his debut Edinburgh performance.
Pete Johansson: Naked Pictures Of My Life – Fringe 2009
He may have been shortlisted for Edinburgh’s best newcomer award, but Pete Johansson is no rookie. He has 19 years of experience behind him. To put that in perspective: he started comedy in his native Canada when fellow nominee Jack Whitehall was just three.
That wealth of experience certainly shines in this assured show, which is more a fluid hour-long set than some grandiose themed idea. The list of topics he covers mightn’t look too ambitious– why men lose arguments with women, the affect aging is having on his body, intimate body piercings – but it’s all consistently witty, and delivered with an appealing honesty and relaxed demeanour.
There’s warnings that his act is going to be filthy, but the term ‘frank’ would be more accurate. Like compatriot Mike Wilmot, he talks about sex not for cheap laughs, but because it’s part of his life and it’s something that can be extremely funny – certainly it his capable hands.
The honesty can take us off the beaten track, such as his confessions about how pregnancy caused his wife to perpetually fart, while common experiences, such as watching a partner struggle into a dress that’s way too small, are described in well-observed detail. The potentially hackneyed men vs woman shtick is given a more thoughtful twist by bringing Desmond Morris’s socio-biological theories into the mix.
Sharp asides add to the enjoyment. Cheekily playing up his foreigner status, he takes great joy in deliberately mispronouncing British words and asking ‘is that right?’, while he mocks the shock-jock comics with a sarcastic: ‘Ha, ha! Rape is funny…’
There are no whistles and bells on Johansson’s straight-as-a-die stand-up, but he does it so well, he really doesn’t need any embellishments.
|Date of live review: Sunday 30th Aug, '09|
Review by Steve Bennett
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