Tom Allen: Absolutely (4 stars)

This article is from 2017

Tom Allen: Absolutely

A cheeky, flirty hour about maintaining a lavish lifestyle

Single, still living with his parents and sick of feeling like the rest of his generation is steaming ahead, Tom Allen uses Absolutely to get plenty off his chest. As always, his flamboyant, camp demeanour allows him to flirt with the audience, winning them over in almost every instance.

Reflecting on the past, he thinks back to how lessons in primary school were like watching a teacher on the brink of a mental breakdown while friends' birthday parties were just organised chaos. But ultimately, Allen's 2017 Fringe hour focuses on his present-day lavish lifestyle, sharing his M&S shopping experiences and the struggles of being with someone who's got bad bathroom grouting. The gem of this show is hearing about some pre-driving test practice with his dad: the 'fun vibes' Allen Jnr envisioned were shattered after numerous stalls and back-seat driving from his father meant he had to face his fear of confrontation.

There's little pretence to Tom Allen. His material is delivered with warmth and in a manner that makes it relatable for everyone in the room. He could have gone bigger for his tenth year at the Fringe, but by using his cheeky eccentricity to simply speak his mind, the hour flies by.

Pleasance Courtyard, 5–27 Aug (not 14), 8pm, £8.50–£11 (£7.50–£12). Preview 4 Aug, £7.

Tom Allen: Absolutely

  • 4 stars

Sharp of both tongue and suit, Tom Allen (you'll have seen him on 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, Live at the Apollo and Channel 4's Comedy Gala) presents a brand new show. Ages 14+.