Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014: comedian Jason Cook examines life’s relentless onslaught
'I’m looking at how all the wonderful things happening to me also have a negative effect'
This article is from 2014.
Between building a reputation on the live circuit and writing the BBC Two sitcom Hebburn, Jason Cook has become known for Fringe shows that not only deliver the laughs, but also a dose of heart. In previous years he has tackled such tragic topics as his father’s death and his own brush with mortality, garnering him high-star reviews.
This year’s hour, Broken, he tells us, is devoted to life’s relentless onslaught, and the difficulties of reconciling the good and the bad: ‘I’m sort of looking at how all the things that are happening to me at the minute, while wonderful, also have a negative effect and how I’m desperately trying to cope.’
He locates his success in a willingness to put his personal experiences on the line in order to make a real connection with the audience. ‘I just like telling stories,’ he says, ‘and the Fringe is the one place you can do that really honestly. I’ve never had to fake it so far.’ Lest the darkness overwhelm, the genial Geordie refuses to wallow in the pathos of his subject matter, instead tempering the sadness, he assures us, with ‘jokes: lots of jokes’.
Pleasance Dome, 556 6550, 2–24 Aug (not 4, 11, 18), 5.40pm, £8.50–£11.50 (£7–£10). Previews 30 Jul–1 Aug, £6.