Martin Semple ‘I Don’t Do Jokes’: Fringe Review









Billed as a soldier turned comedian, Semple’s recent turn to the profession gives him a surplus of material that focuses predominately around military life, thus providing the audience with some rather interesting, if somewhat distressing, stories. Making it clear that his brief 30 minutes is a preview to his début full show that will take place next year, he uses the opportunity to test the water seeing what sort of response he can get. The outcome of this is a selection of comedy that is rather hit and miss, excelling at points but falling flat at others. There is definitely an admirable side to hearing chilling tales transformed into laughable comedy, but it’s evident lots of work is still needed.

Laughing Horse at Finnegan’s Wake, 19 – 27 Aug, 12.00pm (12.30pm), free, fpp114.

tw rating 2/5

Taken from Three Weeks, published online Tue Aug 30th.

Dave Nelder and Vague Acquaintances – Free: Fringe Review









The newly ex-civil servant provides an hour of comedy that is shared between him and a selection of his various “acquaintances”: not friends, as he claims he doesn’t have any. Clearly new to comedy, he delivers his jokes on a variety of topics with an uncertainty that betrays an obvious testing of the water. His puns vary from the average to the offensive and his extended commentary on breakfast cereal seems more of a rant than a joke; that said, the audience cannot help but warm to him. His guests range from the not-so-good to ones with definite potential, but this is the beauty of the Free Fringe: it allows you to explore new material without irritating paying customers.

Laughing Horse at The Three Sisters, 7 – 18 Aug (not 12, 13), 7.30pm (8.30pm), free, fpp64.

tw rating 2/5

Taken from Three Weeks, published online Tue Aug 16th 2011.

Bob Slayer’s Punk Rock Chat Show – Free

Bob Slayer’s Punk Rock Chat Show – Free

Bob Slayer/Laughing Horse Free Festival

Bob Slayer provided me with an array of words I could use to describe his gig: ‘travesty,’ ‘nonsense’ or ‘you can’t really call this a show’ are equally apt. Appearing slightly worse for wear, he stumbled through what were essentially no better than drunken ramblings, abusing his assistant and constantly leaving the stage to get another beer in a crude, lacklustre performance that lacked any obvious structure. Admittedly it was their last show, but I expect there were similar results on previous nights, with the same cringe worthy awkwardness. I regret having to be so harsh, but it seems difficult to justify this dim-witted embarrassment of a debauchery when it contained no evidence of any thought or creativity whatsoever.

Laughing Horse @ The Hive, 5 – 22 Aug, 6.15pm (7.15pm), free, fpp 35

tw rating: 1/5

published: Sep-2010

[Alistair  Quaile]

Taken from Three Weeks.