Marlon Davis: Once Upon A Grime
Energetic personality barely covers cracks in foundations of a wobbly and familiar set
This article is from 2014.
Opening with the claim that he doesn’t like the title of his show nor does it have any bearing on the content, Marlon Davis’ megawatt smile, infection enthusiasm and dynamic delivery seem auspicious. Then comes the tired old excuse that his manager made him pick the title months before writing the show, which is a Fringe cliché so old it needs to be permanently retired. The opening monologue perks things up until it all seems to feel slightly familiar, as in lifted straight out of last year’s show. He might have been better off calling the show ‘Hot Tub Grime Machine’.
Stitching together material about his son and his own childhood, his energetic personality covers some of the cracks in the foundations of a wobbly set, including a ‘Karate Kid’ skit that isn’t as funny as he think it is. Scattered throughout are engagements with race and this, especially his take on pragmatic racism, provide some of the best laughs. There are a few token attempts to refer back to the fairytale theme heralded by the title, but not enough to pull the show into a cohesive whole.
Ending with more old material, Davis’ loveable rogue comes across as a chancer. Audiences deserve more.
Assembly George Square Studios, 623 3030, until 24 Aug (not 11), 7.50pm, £9-£10 (£7-£9).