Jayde Adams: Men, I Can Save You | Edinburgh Fringe comedy review
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Jayde Adams: Men, I Can Save You

Edinburgh Fringe comedy review

The key word in the title Men, I Can Save You, is not the one you might think. It’s ‘I’.

Because this is not an attempt to guide blokes through the decline of their millennia-long dominance nor through the behavioural minefields they must negotiate now they have to – shock! – consider their impact on other people.

Jayde Adams offers a handful of sideswipes about the decline of the patriarchy, but her show is primarily about her trying to find some sexual gratification after splitting with her partner. She links going out on the pull with typical male behaviour, but also tries other avenues – including a fling with a celebrity who, to the disappointment of gossip-mongers, remains unnamed.

Her talk of sexual behaviour peaks with a very explicit, very long, very memorable mime, which is framed so as to not appear cheap – though the fact it is inherently tacky is where she finds the laughs. As she jokes, it’s not the sort of movement piece she’d be able to get away with during her future appearances on Strictly Come Dancing, even if one of those three words is very appropriate.

Elsewhere Adams talks about her saviour complex. Indeed her entrance and her look, both as bold as ever, are unapologetically messianic as she swaps the ‘serious black jumper’ of her last Amazon special for beatific pure white robes.

There’s also discussion about getting out of WhatsApp group, how she can never return to her past life as a Adele impersonator now the singer has lost weight, how there’s no consent in the Sleeping Beauty story (a slightly over-familiar topic in comedy), the lifestyle guru Tony Robbins, an on-screen snog in Alma’s Not Normal and the love for her sister.  

Yes, that does sound like a haphazard list – for Men, I Can Save You doesn’t maintain focus on one narrative for long enough for it to feel like a structured or purposeful show, however skilfully Adams brings it all to a tender conclusion. 

A lot here rests of the force of her personality. And fair play, that can support a lot. Her unshakeable self-belief gives her a charisma that holds the audience’s attention throughout – indeed, how else would she get away with that dirty mime?

She can fire a crowd up, then spin in a second to quieten them down for a moment of poignancy. If only those performance skills came on top of a tight, focussed show, as she’s delivered previously, rather than instead of.

• Jayde Adams: Men, I Can Save You is on at the Pleasance Courtyard at 8.20pm

Review date: 12 Aug 2022
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett

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