Steve N Allen: Better Than
- Lauren McKay
- 5 August 2019
This article is from 2019
Relaxed and assured look at positivity
Steve N Allen, best known for his appearances on The Mash Report, leaves the political stuff behind in his new show. Instead, Better Than is an exploration of how to be more positive and a better person. The premise is interesting but some of the gags feel a little worn, with Allen firing shots at the usual suspects of Trump and Weinstein. These jokes raise more of a collective groan from the audience rather than a chortle, and although certainly topical, the gags don't feel fresh.
However, there are plenty of original observations that make for much stronger routines, most notably the one about Allen's sexual mathematics. He takes us through several equations for successful threesomes, foursomes, and more; this seems to have inspired plenty of audiences, as one fan letter reveals. Another highlight is when Allen 'comes out' as an introvert, prompting a series of well-observed gags about why the bashful are sexier.
Allen is an assured and experienced performer, with a relaxed on-stage manner, even in the face of audience heckles and disruption. However, you might leave not entirely sure about what exactly he is doing to make himself better than. But does it really matter when you've had a good laugh?
The Stand 2, until 25 Aug (not 12), 8.50pm, £9 (£8).