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Gary Colman: Chunt

Note: This review is from 2014

Review by Julia Chamberlain

Now I don’t mean to damn with faint praise, but this is simple hour of uncomplicated, clubby standup, an extended set, spread a bit thin, but with plenty of chuckles and laughs attained by skilful working of the audience and interaction. There are also a few too many knowing pub jokes dotted through it. 

As a calling card to bookers, this will probably work well as Gary Colman shows himself to be personable, quick witted, and unflappable, and if some of the long digressions in his domestic tales can be managed down (and they can) then he’s got a couple of tight 20- minute sets to play with. But for an Edinburgh show, I would have hoped for something with a bit more ambition or a dash of something extraordinary. 

This was too often predictable, with deliberate stumbles (Any fans of dog in? Not doggin’, obviously, dogs’) I’m not going to quote any more lines, but it gives you a flavour of the very simple goals he sets himself.  The intention isn’t offensive, but an opening five minutes on his dog’s anus sets the tone very low – we have only just met. On the plus side, there’s a dash of Geordie surreality in some of his imagery that leavens the material.

The audience were quite delighted with the show, it was brisk, clean, entertaining and in the moment, but I have the feeling he really could do more. 

This is not directed solely at Gary Colman, but the whole slather of comics who come to Edinburgh as though there’s some instruction from Comedy Command that you must be at the Festival whether you’ve got something new and interesting to say or not.  What the point of coughing up painful amount of cash to be here when you’re just doing something you’re pretty familiar with, which you could do any night of the week on the circuit – and get paid for.  

Review date: 14 Aug 2014
Reviewed by: Julia Chamberlain
Reviewed at: Whistlebinkies

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