Mark and Haydn: Llaugh
- Brian Donaldson
- 25 August 2019
Disappointing sketch fare from promising duo
It's certainly a brave move to start a sketch show in Edinburgh by portraying miserable local residents heading off to see Mark and Haydn at The Caves. An intriguingly meta beginning for sure, but one which rather flatly introduces us to the pair and they spend the remainder of Llaugh trying to make amends, not always with much success.
Haydn Jenkins (tall, dark-haired, beardy, bespectacled) and Mark Bittlestone (shorter, fairer, clean-shaven, excellent eyesight) were finalists in this year's Sketch Off! competition, generally a decent gauge on who's about to be hot in the world of broken comedy. Perhaps some benefit of the doubt needs to be afforded this pair who seem to have a rising pedigree, but on the evidence of this performance there's a lot of work ahead of them. The comic timing and delivery are slightly awry here, with lines not having much impact on a reasonably numerous crowd, to the point where the duo look as though they met for the first time immediately prior to taking the stage.
There's no shortage of good ideas floating around here, such as the train-toilet sequence which is played from two different perspectives, and the mundanity of a domestic kitchen scene which ends surprisingly. But sadly for the most part, this is a show that the twosome should put behind them as soon as possible to hopefully move on to the funnier things that their reputation suggests they are capable of.
Just the Tonic at The Caves, until 25 Aug, 5.30pm, £6.50 (£5) in advance or donations at the venue.