Luke McQueen: Double Act (3 stars)

This article is from 2015

Luke McQueen: Double Act

credit: Sun Lee

Furious show aimed largely at a successful former friend ends limply

The prospect of a Luke McQueen show is terrifying. Having cultivated an embittered and unhinged persona with a confrontational attitude towards both the audience and reviewers, he seemingly has no concept of going too far. The opening set-piece unleashes a torrent of aggression on one audience member and McQueen’s all-encompassing, dead-eyed glare, only a few feet away from everyone in this intimate venue, suggests no one is safe.

The ostensible theme of the show is McQueen’s anger and hurt at a betrayal by his previous comedy partner Jack Whitehall, with his ire aimed squarely at the successful comic and his father. Between the bouts of verbal assault, McQueen puts his lack of shame to use in some daring skits. Video footage of him bothering members of the public, a clever flirtation with race and a lack of self-preservation demonstrate the lengths to which he is willing to go for laughs. Whitehall’s endless jokes about being a wimpy posh boy simply pale in comparison.

After so much hype about McQueen’s malevolence, Double Act is relatively benign. Despite a lot of sound and fury, the pay-off sometimes seems inadequate, but to spend an hour when it feels like genuinely anything can happen is a rare treat.

Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, until 31 Aug, 9.45pm, £8.50–£10.50 (£7–£9).

Luke McQueen: Double Act

  • 3 stars

The Invisible Dot Ltd. Luke McQueen was once part of a very promising double act. Where did it all go wrong? Suspense, eccentric set-pieces, elaborate ruses and commitment to character - McQueen broods over his ex partner. ‘McQueen makes the room crackle with life’ (Guardian). ‘Daring, original and innovative’ ★★★…