Paul F Taylor

Paul F Taylor

Began performing stand-up in 2005. Winner of the NATY New Act Of The Year competition in 2013.
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Paul F Taylor: Head in the Clouds

Edinburgh Fringe comedy review

‘I’m a whimsy comedian, what am I doing at 11.30pm?’ Paul F Taylor not unreasonably asks of his timeslot. Maybe an am/pm mix-up?

But actually the pre-bedtime slot, at least on a non-rowdy weekday, works for his gentle, charming humour, which has a slightly dreamy otherworldliness, though rooted in reality.

Taylor has a delightfully inventive visual trick to display all the thoughts floating around his head, so effective yet so simple that it’s a wonder no one came up with it before. 

He plucks those ideas out of the sky: a brilliant new take on the difference between cats and dogs (in their trade union negotiating skills), a William Wallace spoof, a skit imaging the differences between North and South Korea being no different from those between North and South England.

His best nuggets of nonsense are worthy of Harry Hill, but a few are a bit more self-indulgent. The deconstruction of the ‘I fucked your mum’ heckle putdown goes on too long, as does the mime routine that requires some audience participation – especially tonight when few of the scant crowd climbed aboard the premises.

Not all the thoughts are pleasant ones. Taylor is still dogged by the negativity of the physics teacher who told him he would never amount to anything as his head was always in the clouds. Reclaiming that criticism as his title, this show is his proof of his achievements, however esoteric.

The show’s framing device enables him to speak about his ADHD in a more interesting way than pure stand-up would, especially as he acknowledges that no one ever has any sympathy for a condition whose milder symptoms everyone suffers now and again.  

Talk of his two-year-old daughter makes a sweet show even sweeter Taylor is never happier than when playing with her, when his head is always in that moment, oblivious to distractions and intrusive thoughts. If he charms and entertains her half as much as he does us, she’s a lucky girl.

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Published: 26 Aug 2023


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