Del Strain – Original Review

Note: This review is from 2005

Review by Steve Bennett

Strain bases his act on the image of a lazy, thieving, aggressive Glaswegian Ned, and a possibly psychotic one at that – a sort of comedic Begbie, if you like.

Though it sounds an intriguing prospect, Strain hasn’t the performance skills to quite pull it off. For one, the persona slips from casual shoplifter to deranged maniac very erratically; and the nervous twitch he effects to signify this isn’t fooling anyone.

But the main problem lies because the whole set is so obviously geared towards getting the next prepared joke out, rather than allowing the comedy to naturally emerge through the exaggerated character.

Of the gags themselves, well they’re patchy. Some are perfectly respectable, some are really dreadful puns, which again don’t sit well with a character who’s supposed to be a dangerous nutter.

His set works better when he sticks to honest observations about the sort of white trash he seems to have personal experience of, even though other stand-ups have covered similar territory, whether they call them chavs, scallies or Neds.

Although it shouldn’t be an issue, his broad accent and rapid delivery also puts a barrier between him and the audience, which he could do with addressing.

Review date: 1 May 2005
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett

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