Thursday, 2 September 2010

Andrew O'Neill @ The Tron

Andrew O'Neill (***)

comedy review for the list

If Andrew O'Neill's poster description "occult comedian" suggests an evening of witty witchcraft, that's not what he's serving at this year's Fringe. He's a metalhead, and wears all black clothing (and owns a black beach towel), but he's a long way from turning any unfortunate front-row volunteer into a newt.

He's actually very normal, towel tastes aside. In mocking religion, racism and homophobia he wrings laughs out of well-worn and worthy comedic subjects, and a long story about his first ever fight provides an impressive variety of angles. Metal music and culture is another deep well for comedy, one which O'Neill could probably explore further.

Unfortunately almost all of O'Neill's short scripted skits fall flat, both punctuating and puncturing his set. Surely every good David Dickinson joke has long ago been told, so there's not much to gain from two more attempts; and providing a melodramatic power ballad with a mundane answer is a schoolboy's game.

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