Jason Byrne – People’s Pupeteer – Live

18 Oct

Brighton Comedy Festival: Brighton Dome, Saturday October 13, 2012

Hyperactive Irishman Jason Byrne’s manic pally chatter and sex-obsessed material was about as original as a Tory chancellor’s tub-thumping tirade about the ‘work shy’.

Just like an Old Etonian pandering to the predilections of the faithful at a party conference, the genial Byrne knew what his audience wanted and gave it them by the bucketful.

Throughout this show he involved them in everything – the first half of the act was almost exclusively centred on them – from poking fun at those who sauntered in late to gently mocking and mimicking the mannerisms of some audience members.

This was Byrne at his best, when he was relying on his quick wit to respond to whatever he had to play with. It was sharp, skillful and, as he said, with tongue-in-cheek horror “like a comedy workshop”.

It wasn’t until the second half that he delivered his prepared material, a frenetic wheeze focused on socially awkward situations and, to a far greater, extent sex.

Unlike the first half, it was standard fare and largely predictable, but the audience willingly lapped up his cheeky and titillating tales.

In some hands it would appear tacky and cheap, but Byrne’s lucky he’s got the child-like glee, harmless demeanour and twinkle in his eye to get away with it.

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