Patrick Turpin: To Me, You Are Perfect
Split stage personae make for an intriguingly clever hour
There may have been a nagging question going through your head while watching 60 minutes of Patrick Turpin at Sneaky Pete's: wonder if Jonny Sweet or Bo Burnham will ever return to the Fringe? Channelling the Massachusetts musical comic's flitting in and out of the artifices of stage performance, while tapping into the Nottinghamshire wag's naively conspiratorial manner and habit of talking over and in tandem with his recorded material, Turpin delivers a thoroughly engaging show.
Over the course of an hour, he covers a wide scope of themes including love, ambition and incest. The latter is amusingly triggered by Jeremy Irons' rather contentious remarks about gay marriage into an elongated section in which Turpin flirts with a recording of his own father, who correctly assumes that all this odd chat must be research for his son's next show.
While donning an Ophelia-like headband, Turpin takes on the role of struggling thesp, delivering small theatrical trinkets (or longer dramatic interludes) before floridly announcing 'and … scene'. At which point, he becomes Turpin the rising stand-up who chats loosely with his crowd ('guys') reflecting back favourably (or not so) on the material we have just witnessed. To Me, You Are Perfect is a clever show which hinges on us believing equally in his twin characters. Whether Theatre Patrick or Comedy Patrick finally wins out offstage will no doubt determine his next move.
Sneaky Pete's, run ended.