Mark Watson (4 stars)

This article is from 2008.

Mark Watson

Lightning fast, likeable wit from not quite Welsh wizard

Most 55-minute comedy shows, explains Mark Watson, use 50 minutes of material then allow five for laughter. But being a pessimist, the self-slagging, nervy wonderboy has prepared an hour. Based on audience reactions, the wiry, fake Welshman should have aimed for nearer 45. Darting through the aisles as an ice-breaker, then fast-forward walking on to 'the biggest stage of my career', his breathless, machine-gun delivery never lets up. Even when his shoelace comes undone, he carries on while a girl in the front row ties it up.

He's an enthusiastic perfectionist, famous for his 24 and 36-hour comedy marathons, and even though he looks like he might spontaneously combust any second, he's brought us another Rocky-style triumph. Discussing marriage ('she could re-recruit easily; I probably wouldn't get another one'), JK Rowling envy and the stress-related chest pains that forced him to take it easy last year, his magnetic, engaging delivery makes him impressive and likeable at the same time. If this is a race, Mark Watson seems on track for a personal best.

Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, until 25 Aug (not 12), 8pm, £13.50–£15 (£12–£13.50).

Mark Watson: All The Thoughts I've Had Since I Was Born

  • 4 stars

Wit and wisdom from the (fake) Welsh comedian, in lightning fast, jam-packed show.

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