Carl Donnelly 3: Carl Donnelier! (3 stars)

This article is from 2011.

Carl Donnelly 3: Carl Donnelier!

Meandering tales that finally pay off

It’s easy to see why critics and award judges have heaped plaudits on Carl Donnelly. But on this occasion, his easy style of stand-up is muddied somewhat by his inability to stay on topic. In the initial few minutes he becomes preoccupied chatting to his front row and during the remainder of the set goes all the round the houses on his way to concluding his tales.

He’s a self-confessed waffler who notes that he’s easily distracted and that his show is simply a series of stand-up stories strung together. If there is a theme it’s about being true to yourself (which is not as wet as it sounds). Most of the time Donnelly’s tendency to prevaricate is probably endearing but in a crowded, warm room you really do want him to just get on with it.

Nevertheless when he does complete an anecdote it proves worth the wait; routines such as people’s habits of building up an elaborate story around the reason they can’t eat a particular food is perfectly executed and his closing story about a novelty dancing routine involving other comedians is close to being sublime.

Udderbelly’s Pasture, 0844 545 8252, until 29 Aug, 7.50pm, £10–£12 (£9–£11).

Carl Donnelly Live in Edinburgh

Carl Donnelly 3: Carl Donnelier!

  • 3 stars

Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee Carl Donnelly (as seen on Mock The Week, Dave’s One Night Stand and Russell Howard’s Good News) returns to the Fringe for his third solo show. Join him as he adjusts to life without his trademark hair and tinted glasses for what promises to be an hour of hilarious tales and unbridled…

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