Marcus Brigstocke – Original Review | Review by Steve Bennett

Marcus Brigstocke – Original Review

Note: This review is from 2005

Review by Steve Bennett

With his authoritative cynicism, educated tones and Guardianista-friendly liberalism, Brigstocke is in huge demand for topical TV and radio shows. In fact, so many producers now have him on speed dial that he has a virtual monopoly on anything even vaguely news-based ­ to the exclusion of other voices, and the dilution of his own talent.

But away from this formulaic, make it quick, make it angry and make it funny-ish world, where productivity is more important than quality, Brigstocke is an accomplished stand-up with the ability and experience to play to any situation.

Sure, he's yet another middle-class left-leaning comic hectoring away from his soap box positioned at the very top of the moral high ground, but he does set himself apart from his fellow travellers by giving his rants a sharper edge.

He is often the most extreme of his band; being posher and even more furious than most, pushing the reactionary arguments he's trying to demolish to their ridiculous conclusions, and then some.

The rightly celebrated 'Mrs Brigstocke' response to the 'coming over here, taking our women' approach to immigration is sublime. Edgy, uncomfortable and with a serious point. Even if after the payoff he steps back from the brink, and back into safer ground.

True, some of the topics he tackles are hardly his exclusive domain. Since most comic's days comprise of little more than daytime and late-night TV, it's no surprise that many have come up with a take on the Claims Direct or loan-shark adverts that fill those hours.

But again, Brigstock could stake a claim to having the definite routine on this, starting in cosy observational territory, but pushed on to a memorably vivid metaphor as a punchline, lent extra weight by the all-pervasive indignant rage.

Review date: 10 Jun 2005
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett

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