Just two years ago Pappy’s Fun Club were playing the Free Fringe with a 10am slot in a wee bar on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile. A year later they were the surprise package of the 2007 Fringe, nominated for the if.comeddies award, and catapaulted into the big-time. Their reward is a spot at the Pleasance Cabaret Bar and they do not disappoint.
The Fun Club, made up of Ben (Giggly Pappy), Brendan (Grinning Pappy), Matthew (Geeky Pappy) and Tom (Chubby Pappy), are on a quest to save the world. Their secretive benefactor, the eponymous Pappy, wants them to be greener and so they set out to resolve the world’s energy crisis using Funergy. If only their Funergy machine actually worked, then the power they produce would light the whole of Edinburgh throughout the month of August. Their sketches range from the knowingly groan-inducing (“not strong”, admits Matthew at one point), to the genius. There are owls and whales, fights between cities, stuntmen, songs and more running gags than you’ll find anywhere outside an Eddie Izzard set. This is all delivered with costumes seemingly made out of whatever they could find in their kitchen cupboards and a sense of infectious glee.
It’s all fantastically silly and often just feels like a few friends tooling around trying to make each other laugh. This is where the Pappy’s quartet really rise about the run of the mill sketch act – it takes enormous intelligence and talent to deliver a show which feels so anarchic but which never overflows into self indulgence.
If you don’t leave this show with an enormous smile on your face (and a free badge) you should really stop going to see comedy and find something else to do with your time.
Pappy’s Fun will be appearing at the Pleasance Courtyard at 6.40pm until August 25.