- Claire Sawers
- 17 August 2017
This article is from 2017
A satire on the US president is sometimes on point but often a bit tired
Comedian Simon Jay debuted this Fringe show last year, when the idea of Agent Orange actually getting into power was still a pretty good punchline in itself. Jay even said that if he won, it would be 'too depressing to satirise'. One year on, Jay has slathered his face in mandarin face paint again and updated last year's sold-out show now that Trump is actually in the White House.
An opening montage shows old TV clips (Barack Obama and Tom Hanks laughing at what seemed like such a ridiculous long shot, just a billionaire's ego trip) but getting more chilling as polls creep upwards. The 2017 show has a shell-shocked reporter delivering news of Trump's victory, assuring viewers they're not having a nightmare. Gags about Trump's creepy-sexy relationship with Ivanka and his dad's links to the KKK are on point, given extra weightiness with a chart of Trump's LGBT discrimination (starting with removing LGBT rights from the government website, up to July's ban on transgender people in the military).
Simon Jay, a gay socialist liberal when he's offstage, plays the alpha male in suitably obnoxious style, picking on his audience as they quiz him. But it feels like this skit, like The Great White Dope himself, might be getting a bit tired in places, and outstaying its welcome.
Gilded Balloon Teviot, until 28 Aug (not 23), 2.45pm, £11.50–£12.50 (£10.50–£11.50).