The Barry Delusion (2 stars)

This article is from 2015

The Barry Delusion

A short but not always sweet set riddled by disorganised thoughts

Somewhere within Barry Ferns' 35-minute set there's a decent show trying to get out. Sadly, it's buried under half-formed ideas and a whole lot of filler. We're off to a good start as he riffs with the audience and while he's no master of ad-lib, his casual manner is charming enough and gets a small but game audience onside with ease.

Unhappy at being named ‘Barry’, he goes along the downtrodden path and his initial observations generally hit the mark. His accents, however, are all over the place, and while it's a failing of which he's acutely aware, his use of a Chinese accent to usher in a skit on racism is unnecessarily clumsy.

There's some decent stuff about his ethical conflicts when shopping in Primark, and the paradox of happy ending massages, but Ferns frequently trips himself up over disorganised thoughts. Rarely pausing to compose himself, he races through a short set without getting properly stuck into his targets. He freely admits it's a work-in-progress; here's hoping he's right at the start of that process.

Laughing Horse @ The Counting House, 667 7533, until 30 Aug (not 25 & 26), 10pm, free.

The Barry Delusion

  • 2 stars

Barry Ferns / Free Festival The new show from Barry Ferns: Spirit of the Fringe (2014, Edinburgh Festival Fringe) and Malcolm Hardee Award winner. ★★★★ (Kate Copstick, Scotsman). ‘A marvellous, personal, beautifully constructed and laughter-packed hour’ ★★★★★ (ThreeWeeks). ★★★★ ( Age category: 14+