Vix Leyton: Antihero | Edinburgh Fringe comedy review
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Vix Leyton: Antihero

Edinburgh Fringe comedy review

It’s hard to feel ill-at-ease spending time with Vix Leyton, even in this sparsely populated anonymous hotel basement.

Credit to Leyton’s qualities as a ray of sunshine that this hour never feels awkward, even when her unimaginative material fails to produce much of a spark.

Still hanging around Facebook because she likes the attention, Leyton is able to track her declining popularity from the birthday messages on her wall. This year she’s turned 39, which is a weird age, although comedians will (and do) say that about any age. She pokes a bit of fun at Buzzfeed articles about ageing, but her list of ‘you know you’re 39 when…’ jokes is frankly indistinguishable from something that they would put out.

Approaching her 40s, she’s starting to think about following her mum into the family business of being the local eccentric. Leyton’s made her mum almost the sole topic of her sophomore show, and Karen is probably the antihero of the title.

Detailing her controlling behaviour, homophobia and vindictive attitude towards random celebrities, Leyton appears to want to paint her mother as a lovable oddball, but the portrait that emerges is inescapably sinister: a thin comic veneer over what sounds like a pretty toxic relationship. I guess you had to be there?

The decades-long vendettas against random celebrities including Rufus Hound, Philip Schofield, Vernon Kay, Nadine Coyle, Katie Piper and the submarine billionaires are kind of entertaining but, hoo boy, I wouldn’t want to run into that woman, well, basically anywhere.

Straying into dating material briefly, Leyton presents a few routine anecdotes and opinions on the topic of modern dating, and talks briefly about seeing a woman, but we never quite arrive at the point where mother Leyton finds out what’s going on.

There’s a lingering sense that the comic is struggling to keep things as inoffensive and surface-level as possible, and ending on the show’s one callback just has the effect of highlighting its lack of complexity or ambition.

Review date: 12 Aug 2023
Reviewed by: Tim Harding
Reviewed at: Stand 3 and 4

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