We arrived early, which was a shame because the headline act and two others were very late thanks to traffic! (For the second consecutive month). Never mind – plenty of time for food and drink (Dave: and for Dave to perv over Cerys!), Cerys being Cerys Nelmes (Lessen Mercy) our MC for the night who came on and explained about the late start and finally, at about 9pm we got underway. It was a quieter room than usual thanks to some beautiful weather that has kept people on the beaches and at the barbeques.
Cerys is a very down to earth lady (Dave: Smutty) who has been blessed in the boob department, further enhanced by a low cut dress. “More than a handful” as she reminded us. A fruity (Dave: Prickly Pear) West Country accent mixed with a cutting tongue, she used it to good effect to rib several of the audience members, including a table of ladies behind us, ourselves, and others. All delivered with such confidence that there was not even one return heckle! (Dave: She made me take notes on how good her boobs were)
Our opener James Alderson (Lemonades Jars) we had seen before last year at the Phoenix in Exeter. Mostly the same material, Aided by some A3 laminated photos of Gillian McKeith, Nigella Lawson and Robbie Savage, he got quite a few laughs out of an as yet fairly sober audience.
Then to a break, a little more from Cerys, and onto our middle section. We had found out that we were having a surprise extra guest, in the form of our old friend David Arnold, originally from Wales, now living locally, who had just popped up the road to do a small middle spot for us.
Firstly in the middle though, was a new face to us, American Tim Renkow (Trik Women). Tim has Cerebral Palsy, but that didn’t stop him from putting over a blistering set, and once we had tuned in to his particular style of delivery, had us laughing throughout. He uses his CP in his act to challenge the audience’s perception of disabled people and we liked him a lot – to the point of booking up to see him up in Edinburgh in August.
Next up was Ben Thurston (Bonnets Hurt). He admitted to us before the act that this was his fifteenth or sixteenth gig, so he has not been going for a long time as yet. What he did was good and there is plenty of time for Ben to build his act and to become more confident, part of what we enjoy is seeing new comics in their infancy developing over time (or in some cases degenerating).
Finally in this section, David Arnold (Lord and Diva). His material on perving out of the back window to his lesbian neighbours and on his childhood bathtime routine, all delivered in that rich Welsh accent, always goes down well with people hearing it for the first time, and equally with us, even though we have heard it several times now. David is still a relative newcomer to the comedy circus ring and we know there are more stories to tell!
A few more well aimed daggers from our delicious diva Cerys and onto our headliner Julian Deane (Laud Jeanine). We saw him quite a long time ago at Annabel’s in Plymouth and loved his set then. Not a lot new tonight, but Julian delivers his deadpan material clearly and confidently with the odd killer twist of a punchline. Small in stature, he uses this in his act, regularly poking fun at himself. His act is slick and well crafted, no faffing or looking unsure for Mr Deane. “Well worth his 72 hour drive down” as he put it.
All in all, a good night of comedy, some old, some new and all very entertaining! We will be back next month for the wonderful Yianni!
James, Julian, Cerys, Tim, Ben and David.