Six Flipping Brilliant Comedians Everyone's Going To Be Talking About At Edinburgh
The Debrief: From Aisling Bea to Massive Dad, here's who you need to look out for
Every time you think we're over the super-outdated and, quite frankly embarassing 'women aren't funny' thing, something happens that makes you realise that there's still pillocks who think otherwise out there. Once I terminated a friendship with a guy because he looked me right in the eye and told me just that; women aren’t funny. 'They’re just not', he said, shaking his head. 'All their jokes are just complaints about men. It’s not clever. It’s boring.'
That day I decided I would never make the effort to contact him again. Because his comment was so completely outdated and fucking wrong that I was practically forced to swallow my own vomit before responding and telling him so. Yes, panel shows could fool you into thinking that comedy is all about bearded, checked-shirt-wearing men who make quips about hummus and Waitrose and how terribly middle class they are. But, as anyone with more than one brain cell to rub together knows, there are heaps of funny lasses out there, becoming more and more successful every day as they scoop up awards and headline shows like nobody’s business meaning that hopefully, someday soon, we might actually be able to (whisper it) chuck the term 'female comedian' in the bin and instead just call them what they are; comedians.
Anyways, the good news is that loads of them - from the well-established, five star veterans to the newbies who are reinventing the comedy circuit - will be heading up to Edinburgh for a whole month to make you laugh so much a little bit of pee comes trickling out. Your move, ex-friend.
1. Abi Roberts: Downtown Abi at The Voodoo Rooms
I’d recommend seeing Abi Roberts’ standup show when hungover. That’s not because she’s not great – because she really, really is – but because she’ll make you forget all about the stupid shit you did in that festival bar last night (climbing across tables while shouting 'are you Jimmy Carr?' at a dark haired man always seems less acceptable in the cold light of day). Last year she did a particularly gut-busting bit about scooping a shit into her handbag after a one night stand. See, you’re okay, really.
2. Lolly Adefope: Lolly at The Pleasance Courtyard
Lolly is a Twitter genius – if you can use the word darling to describe someone whose 'your mum' jokes are so good you find yourself sending them to your brother, even though you share a mother which somewhat defeats the purpose. After being featured on Channel 4 and BBC Radio1Xtra, the 23 year old is bringing her first full solo show to Edinburgh – go see her this year and you’ll get full bragging rights for introducing your mates to her acid tongue (that sounded much less creepy in my head).
3. Lazy Susan: Double Act at The Pleasance Dome
After being nominated for the Fosters Best Newcomer award in 2014, Celeste and Freya are back with their fast paced sketch comedy. Their whimsical stories are wonderfully weird, but never veer into gratuitous quirkiness, and each sketch is perfectly crafted so you’re always left wanting a little bit more. The pair bounce off each other with such pace that leaves you unsure what’s scripted, what’s ad-libbed and what’s just echoing through your brain. This bizarre hour is some of the best character comedy I’ve seen – and due to a somewhat misguided ambition of marrying / befriending a real life comedian, I’ve sat through a lot of character comedy.
4. Massive Dad: Massive Dad 2.0 Step Up 2 Massive Dad at The Pleasance Dome
I mean, aside from the fact that Massive Dad member Stevie works at The Debrief and is therefore obviously excellent, Massive Dad are most likely set to be the most bonkersley enjoyable sketch group you get to see over the month. Last year their act was based on a Russian Hunger Games-style thing (it totally made sense, we promise), and this time around they're naming the whole thing Massive Dad 2.0 Step Up 2 Massive Dad and it's going to be excellent. Beware an untoward reference to yoghurts during the set...
5. Aisling Bea: Plan Bea at Gilded Balloon
If you grew up in a rural shithole, Aisling Bea is pretty much your spirit animal – she hails from rural Ireland, and has an impressive menagerie of coming of age / horror stories to prove it. Each tale is delivered with a hurried breathlessness that reminds me of when you’re rushing through a filthy story while the poor sod you’re talking about has their back turned, and her ability to see absurdity in the banal is nothing short of incredible. Go see her, and join the queue to buy her a pint after.
6. Bridget Christie: A Book For Her at The Stand Comedy Club
She’s borderline iconic, such is the ability of this fringed (in both senses of the word, LOLZ) favourite to hit you right on the funny bone, while at the same time making some insightful statements about what it means to be a woman. This new show marks her move from stage to page and, judging by the fact I was near blinded by the number of stars reviewers have bestowed upon her latest offering, promises plenty of the sharp, feminist comedy Bridget has become renowned for. This one’s going to be big, and rightfully so – because, mate, women ARE fucking funny.
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