Four Comedic Porpoises

FRANKIE ROGERS is bemused but entertained by a night of comedy which never fully comes together.

ADC Charlie Palmer Comedy four comedic porpoises frankie rogers henry anderson-elliott

ADC Theatre, 11pm, Wednesday 15th May, £6/5

Despite the really irritating title, Four Comedic Porpoises was actually quite good. I had to ask one of the performers what a porpoise was before I went, and when he replied, “like a whale but funnier,” my heart sank. ‘Porpoise’ isn’t even a funny word unless you say it with a fake Boston accent, let alone an animal well-known enough to be. But I got over the try-hard title, went in with an open mind, and was pleasantly surprised.

Loveable compere Charlie Palmer introduced the show with some excellent jokes and facts about porpoises, which went down really well even after he’d admitted that porpoises aren’t funny. I fell in love with his slightly awkward manner from the start, and his spontaneous interaction with the audience was impressive.

Next up was Henry Anderson-Elliott. My opinion of him drastically changed during the course of his set: the first two words in my notes were ‘annoying’ and ‘irritating’, and the last ‘SO GOOD’. Henry was fantastically unique, employing a hilarious don’t-give-a-shit-about-this attitude throughout. Highlights in his set included the references to the fact that none of it tied together, and a superb ‘generic other person’ voice.

Charlie’s second entrance was possibly even better than his first, finishing with an absolutely genius performance of Anne Hathaway playing Ray Mears in ‘Ray Miserables’, singing ‘I steamed a bream’. (Made sense if you were there and was probably the highlight of the show).

Sadly the next comedian, Ryan Hocking, was not so popular. He wasn’t terrible, and moments of his set even got a clap, but he was definitely the weakest member of the group and I couldn’t help but feel a bit uncomfortable when he indulged in extremely long anecdotes with punch lines we could all see coming from the start. I did quite enjoy his wackiness and his innovative use of song lyrics, though.

The final act was Milo Edwards, famous for his #milojokes usually about the Tweenies or food. We all thought we knew what to expect with Milo, but then he entered wearing a hard hat and everything just went uphill from there. Milo was a total crowd pleaser, providing solid observational/anecdotal comedy about supermarkets, furniture, and Auschwitz, which he somehow managed to tie up excellently.

In the end I still couldn’t work out why they decided to base the show around porpoises. It had so much potential and could’ve been a lot better if they’d replaced the theme with something funnier and more coherent.