Catriona Knox Thinks She's Hard Enough | Review by Steve Bennett
review star review star review star review star review blank star

Catriona Knox Thinks She's Hard Enough

Note: This review is from 2014

Review by Steve Bennett

Catriona Knox exudes a superhuman level of raucous energy to ensure her audience has a great time; starting with something between a zumba class and a nightclub, and ending with a fiery evangelical preacher, full to the brim of the Holy Spirit.

But she’s not scrimped on the creative energy, either, creating a succession of brilliantly odd cartoonish characters, exaggerated and bizarre but never so surreal that they lose complete touch with actuality.

She needs a little help in achieving these highs of laughter; and recruits one audience member to be her permanent ‘work experience’ foil, on the receiving end of the sort of intense audience interaction the likes of Adam Riches trailblazed. The good sport she chose tonight couldn’t have been better cast, adding jokes of his own without pulling focus and adding to the playful party spirit Knox sets up. She rolls with her patsy’s reactions, and indeed the reactions whole room, retaining the straight faces her alter-egos require, but with just a glint in the eye to share a gag. Few character comics exhibit this flexibility to work with the crowd.

The show starts with her as Giselle Munchen, a stern Fanny Craddock-type of celebrity chef espousing austerity cuisine and far-right views, the Nigel Farage of the kitchen; while her insanely fervent preacher, Gaston Paul, puts every other evangelical parody to shame, full of oddball idiosyncrasies to go with the irresistible supercharged passion, no matter what bullshit he spouts.

She also takes on real people; and must be the first comedian to build a satire around one-year-old Prince George, though in truth this is only section of the show that doesn’t sparkle brightly. Nick Clegg gets a look-in, too, in what at first appears a fairly straightforward parody of political speech-making, but gradually reveals as many delightful, hilarious twists as Knox’s other creations. You’ll never take him seriously again… though that might have nothing to do with this show.

Fearless and bold in performance, imaginative and offbeat in inspiration, and razor-sharp in her writing, Knox is a formidable comic powerhouse who’s produced a ridiculous riot of a show. It’s a blast.

Review date: 3 Aug 2014
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett
Reviewed at: Pleasance Courtyard

What do you think?

Live comedy picks

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.