Amy Matthews: Moreover, The Moon | Edinburgh Fringe comedy review
review star review star review star review blank star review blank star

Amy Matthews: Moreover, The Moon

Edinburgh Fringe comedy review

Moreover, The Moon is a poem by the early 20th Century modernist polymath Mina Lo, which is seen as an allegory for how the patriarchy affects women's lives. At least, that's what the internet tells me.

Choosing such an erudite reference indicates the height of ambition in Amy Matthews' debut hour, which aims to tie pop culture, personal reminiscences and behavioural psychology into a smart comic thesis about our performative lives.

And while she doesn't quite achieve that perfect package, the hour includes solid set pieces which subtly  serve up food for thought, setting a promising direction of travel for this savvy Fringe debutant.

The hour is based on 'main character syndrome' – a term that emerged from social media for the self-centred, borderline narcissistic tendency to imagine a perfect version of yourself as the star of an imaginary movie, and everybody else merely supporting actors. Hence the way people careful curate unreal versions of themselves online.

Matthews starts her analysis with an actual lead character, Amelie, and what's probably its most famous scene from that eponymous movie, narrating a journey through Paris for the benefit of a blind man, whether he wanted to hear or not. It inspired the 26-year-old comic to start commentating on her own environment… but it wasn't quite so romantic.

That sets up a self-deprecating streak that runs through the hour. Although she has early happy memories of 'parachute day' at school, as a teenager she was painfully shy. If you feel worthless, you act accordingly and so the cycle continues, she asserts.

Stories from her adulthood don't carry that same depth of feeling. A bad date is nothing more than that, although the bloke she describes is singularly awful. And in one barely credible, but nonetheless true, anecdote she tells of a relationship break-up that takes in a pop star and a member of the Belgian aristocracy. These don't really serve her central proposition, but they are great yarns, so it's clearly why she included them. And sometimes she uses over-familiar stand-up phraseology, such as the sarcastic '…because things are going very well for me,' which contrasts with her original thoughts elsewhere.

For clearly Matthews' mind is working differently from whatever 'normal' is, for better or worse. The godawful poems she wrote during the loneliness of lockdown are bizarre testament to that. Anxiety is part of her brain's malfunction too, which manifests in her getting distracted by YouTube videos on how to survive various unlikely scenarios because you just never know.

Such routines are an indication of where the hour is heading, and she brings the show to a philosophical close that's thoughtful and warm-hearted.

Amy Matthews: Moreover, The Moon is on at Monkey Barrel Comedy (Carnivore) at 4.35pm

Review date: 18 Aug 2022
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett
Reviewed at: PBH's Free Fringe @ Carnivore Edinburgh

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.