shinytoaster: (Rainbow)
Well, if they're going to make the Secret Policeman's Balls a more regular thing again, that can only be good. I did some stuff with Amnesty International at school and it's very worthwhile and very important and I genuinely think there are few organisations more deserving of a couple of hours of your time every so often.

Every so often, since, 1976, they organise these gigs; Wikipedia notes the first was organised by John Cleese, and they had heavy Python/Beyond the Fringe involvement from the outset. They did a bunch in the 80s but they seem to have trailed off in recent years. I was only dimly aware of the name, and missed the previous revival in 2001, which was organised by St Eddie of Izzard. Who was on tonight as well, doing much the same jokes about God as he's been doing since Definite Article. I mean, I love Eddie, seriously, but his stand-up is, to put it politely, remarkably ... thematically consistent.

Then there were highlights from Russell Brand - who is both an incredibly funny man and an incredible cunt, which means I am conflicted internally - and the Pub Landlord, and, oh, a whole bunch of people, Julian Rhind-Tutt and Stephen Mangan off Green Wing, Richard E Grant, Jo Brand, Seth Green, Chevy Chase for some reason ... and more ...

Unfortunately, the lowlight was Sarah Silvermann. I've been desperate to see some of her stand-up since I read this incredibly interesting article about her in the Observer magazine earlier in the year, all about how she was controversial and yet and at the same time very Jewish. And then I saw her on tone of those Comedy Central Roasts and she was good on that, and so I bounced about a bit in my armchair when they announced her on stage ... and it turned out her stand-up is actually shit. It's not even pseudo-offensive comedy, although it tries to be, God bless her, she's just really, really lame. She's the sort of person who would come on stage at Komedia or Jongleurs and just have people talking through her set. In fact, I think the audience were actually talking through her set. There was certainly precious little laughter. So, you know, I don't need to see her again in anything ever.

If you ever get the chance to see this one, then watch it. It was a thoroughly enjoyable couple of hours nevertheless.

December 2011

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