Tom Ballard: The World Keeps Happening (3 stars)

This article is from 2016

Tom Ballard: The World Keeps Happening

A directionless but amiable hour which skirts across contemporary politics

Appearing at the same venue at the same time as last year is, Tom Ballard says, a clear sign of career plateau. Which would be true had he not been nominated for the Best Newcomer award for his 2015 debut Taxis & Rainbows & Hatred. If that's a career plateau, we're all screwed.

This year's offering feels less fully formed while a first-Saturday-of-the-Fringe audience probably doesn't help: pretty good material about being a feminist doesn't really go down as well as Ballard seems to hope, so he switches back to a less divisive topic: immigration …

He works well with the audience, his easy-going Aussie charm inviting friendly heckles, and we're onside to the point where, after calling an older lady in the front row 'bitch', everyone cheers. The main thread of The World Keeps Happening seems to be politics and he dips in and out of the subject, tackling Brexit, Tony Abbott and Trump, but hops on to the next topic a little too sharply. In a way this works, as things do keep moving, but, punchy as it might be, the show suffers from a lack of direction.

Assembly George Square, until 28 Aug (not 15), 9.15pm, £10.50–£12 (£9.50–£11).

Tom Ballard – The World Keeps Happening

  • 3 stars

Tom Ballard: 2016 Pinder Prize Winner Best Newcomer nominee Edinburgh Fringe 2015, Inaugural Pinder Prize Winner and Barry Award nominee Melbourne Comedy Festival 2016. How about those collective delusions about our mortality? Ever notice how society’s conditional thinking stimulates perpetual environmental chaos and…