FUN AND GAMS!
JACK EMMINS is left uninspired by an evening of comedy that, though funny, has been done many times before.
ADC Theatre, 11pm, Tuesday 14th May, £6/5
Once again the Footlights prove they are funny people, though in FUN AND GAMS! they offer nothing of particular value to a reduced and tellingly quieter crowd.
FUN AND GAMS! was a stripped down and confusingly named show starring some of the better-known Footlights members as they trialled (and error-ed) their way through three stand-up routines, all of them compered by the vivacious Emma Sidi.
Sidi, though a deft hand at accents, had already shown audiences this wonderful talent in Michaelmas and Lent. If she wanted to point out that foreigners and common people say funny things she did rather a good job, and I laughed the first two times I witnessed this. Now I grow weary at its recurrence.
After the introduction, Harry Michell made his entrance, doing so on a surprising and unsuccessful paedophile quip. It lowered the tone of a workmanlike set of observational and anecdotal comedy. Being ginger, he mentioned his ginger hair. Being an English student, he mentioned he was an English student. Having had a girlfriend, he told us about this funny thing he did near his girlfriend. As he spoke upon his list of reasons as to why his life was less than satisfactory, the audience merely witnessed another case of Cambridge-bubble humour – hardly an achievement.
Then came Jon Bailey, who was introduced after a palate cleanser from Sidi – just in time for the flavour of mediocrity to tease the taste buds once more. As if the anus jokes weren’t enough, the clearly unoriginal Steve Jobs reference and a side point about hand-made sandwiches (that I recall from last term) confirmed that I was watching reasonably funny people say predictable things.
After the first two waves had passed I was left hoping that the final stand-up would provide relief – that Matilda Wnek, surely the Athena of the ADC, the saviour of the show, might provide something that would not confirm the lack of decent substance. My heart sunk a little as she worked her way through more lists: oral sex, a vagina joke, some valid points about rapists, and how to burn off calories if you want to eat McDonalds. It’s not that these things can’t be funny, but clever female stand-ups have been funny about them for a while, and I had hoped for something more.
Ultimately this show left me convinced of what I had begun to suspect during its performance: some talented individuals had chosen to perform material that, despite being well delivered, had little worth – outside the bubble I’d be surprised if it garnered one laugh.
I can only hope that this is exam term taking its toll on an otherwise promising collection of comedians.