Andrew Lawrence: There Is No Escape (4 stars)

This article is from 2013

Andrew Lawrence: There Is No Escape

Nihilism made big, clever and funny

There was a time when Andrew Lawrence could split a room. A special joy was to be had in watching a crowd’s reaction as his gags ventured into darker and darker territory; some shifted uncomfortably in their seats while others gleefully lapped it up. As Lawrence himself points out, if you’re offended then it’s your own fault: he’s ten years into his stand-up career, and there are plenty clips of him online you could have checked out before buying your ticket.

It’s this off-hand, apparently ambivalent persona that the comic has evolved into in There Is No Escape: all nihilism and misanthropy. And it makes for a delicious hour of comedy. For someone who purports not to be bothered, an admirable amount of work has gone into honing his jokes for maximum laughs.

Here, life is analogous to an unwanted and unasked-for puppy. He’s keen to remind us that he’s been nominated for most comedy awards but never won one, so there are obviously many better comedians. We beg to differ. Go see him, but whatever you do, just don’t ask him how he is …

Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, until 25 Aug, 8.50pm, £9.50–£13.50 (£8–£12).

Andrew Lawrence: There Is No Escape

New material from the wildly inventive misanthrope.