Review – Screaming Blue Murder, Underground, Northampton, Jan 28th 2010

We just love going to these comedy evenings at the Derngate. It’s incredible value for money. £12 on the door; £11 in advance; £10 if (like me) you’re an “Enjoy” member. You get a compere, three comedy acts, and two intervals means you get to have a nice drink with it too. Ah the simple pleasures of life.

Dan EvansLast Thursday, we had Dan Evans as the compere. He normally is. His delivery is fast and engaging, he interacts smartly and inventively with the audience and he is definitely Someone To Look Forward To. He does however ALWAYS do the same joke about having a wakeup call at the hotel. Hilarious first time; remembered it with affection the second time; several times on now I just let the other people who haven’t heard it before laugh.

Ava VidalFirst act was Ava Vidal; she has a very clever deadpan delivery which makes the content of her routine stand out. It’s very well thought out, full of funny observations and with a lot of self-deprecation. Not ROFL belly laugh, but extremely wry. Typical material: she is confronted by her 15 year old daughter determined to go out late at night to get drunk in a park. She says her daughter ought to act more responsibly. “Oh yeah I guess you were always responsible when you were 15 Mum”. “Of course I was” she replies, “I stayed at home, looking after you and your brother.”

Chris Martin Second was Chris Martin; a young man who I read is expected to Do Great Things In The Future. Less content than Ava Vidal, but with a more traditional standup delivery. It may be a boy/girl thing but I preferred him to Ava, and Mrs Chrisparkle preferred Ava to him.

Martin Davis Last act was Martin Davis. Very little content to his routine, just bouncing off the audience, which he did tremendously well. Highest rating on the giggleometer of the night – although the final glass of wine always helps an act.

Overall a very enjoyable evening but not a great one. We’ve seen better comedy nights, we’ve seen worse. Maybe we weren’t quite sufficiently warmed up at the beginning? Not sure. Anyway there’s another one in a couple of weeks time. I shall compare. But I won’t compere. That would be asking too much.