Innovative set for connoisseurs
This article is from 2007.
Dapper, diminutive Paul Foot may not bestride his narrow stage like a Colossus, but he is on superb comedic form this year. With sharp, singular observational material and a newfound confidence in his stagecraft, the potential he showed in the past has been roundly realised. Comedy for Connoisseurs is about things that annoy him, and the paroxysms of enervation struggling to break through his fey, soft-spoken mien provide the first laughs of the night. The rest come from some inspired deconstructionist mime, a robustly surreal excursion into the micro-ecology of cakes and a surprisingly innovative (and hilarious) take on homophobia.
Foot’s delivery (a sort of gentle, delirious pedagogy), is a perfect fit for the show’s subject matter. It gives room for the audience to tumble to the more slow-burning gags, most of which are excellent. If there are a few slow spells during the hour, they are more than compensated for by frequent cerebral pay-offs. Suffused also with a subtle subtext of formidable bleakness, greatly enriching what is superficially a buoyant performance, Paul Foot’s 2007 offering is his best to date. He might be a giant yet.
Underbelly, 0870 745 3083, until 26 Aug (not 14), 6.35pm, £9.50 –£10.50 (£8.50–£9.50).