Russell Kane is happy to admit he has flaws – lots of them. In fact, he positively revels in them and thinks they are what makes him who he is. He spurns the smooth delivery of American comedians and, thanks to his computer being stolen, can’t even give a slick powerpoint presentation – the replacement is ingenious and gives a whole new slant on ‘interactive displays’.
What he does have is a cracking idea for a show – looking at why British people are uncomfortable with the idea of perfection. We brag about how unhealthy we are, drink to excess and would far rather marry the girl next door instead of a flawless supermodel.
Kane’s delivery is spot-on and his set is packed with the sort of personal material that fools the audience into thinking they are just sitting in the pub with a particularly funny friend. The parts of the show about his family are both hilarious and touching, in particular a section on his determinedly working-class unreconstructed father who has only ever cried twice in his life – when his mother died and when his favourite currry house closed. Any doubts that he is exaggerating for comic effect are scotched when he challenges the audience members to meet with his mother after the show to have the stories confirmed.
The impeccable structure of this thematic show, which includes some inspired ad-libbing, is reminiscent of the glory days of Chris Addison and must be a leading contendor for this year’s if.comeddies award. Best make sure you get a ticket before the nominations are announced.
Russell Kane is appearing at the Pleasance Courtyard at 8pm until August 25