Mat Ewins Presents Adventureman 7: The Return of Adventureman (4 stars)

This article is from 2017

Mat Ewins Presents Adventureman 7: The Return of Adventureman

Increasingly popular prankster delivers disorganised chaos and laughs galore

Is Mat Ewins the cheekiest scamp in comedy? There are few people in the business who will send out pictures to the press of someone they happen not to be, as a guerrilla tactic to publicise their show (as he triumphantly notes, The Guardian fell for his gag earlier in the month). So, for the record, with no usable images of Mat Ewins kicking around, we've printed the picture he sent us, which is that of Tom Glover, a west country comic he's gigged with (at least that's who Ewins told us he was: really, who knows?).

Ewins' pranksterish sensibilities naturally carry on to his stage work, and in Adventureman 7, the chaos is real and the laughs aplenty as he sets up a video games that's built to fail, creates a driving hazard perception test which lands the participant in trouble, and has us joining in on a karaoke machine that messes around with established lyrics. There is a sort-of narrative core to the hour which mainly occurs on screen, as an Indiana Jones-style adventure features a museum being threatened with closure and the hunt for a precious amulet that might save the day; but all of that is largely incidental to the stuff and nonsense which reigns all around the room.

The daftness takes a temporary backseat when he takes a moment to calmly consider the current state of his comedy career. Self-analysis over, and we're back to a weird visualisation of him worrying about his twin fears of sexy women and wasps, and his merging of a cup and plate to invent new types of (totally impractical) crockery (the 'cuplate').

Earlier, casting his eyes out onto a packed crowd, Ewins insists, 'five years ago I performed to nobody. It was brilliant.' Given the enjoyment he engenders in his newfound audiences and the fun he seems to be having himself, it's really more likely that a quiet satisfaction has washed over him with this deserved surge of popularity.

Heroes @ The Hive, until 27 Aug, 8.45pm, £5 or Pay What You Want.

Mat Ewins Presents Adventureman 7: The Return of Adventureman

Multimedia mayhem with lots of audience interaction loosely hung on an Indiana Jones-style adventure plot, including spoofs of video games and films.