Benji Waterstones: The Ayahuasca Diaries (2 stars)

Benji Waterstones: The Ayahausca Diaries

A humdrum chat about drugs and wishes amounts to not a lot

In possibly the most compact and bijou room at the Fringe, some 25 souls squeeze into a back cupboard to get very up close and personal with Benji Waterstones. A junior doctor on his hols, he's here to regale us about the positive (or otherwise) effects of ayahuasca (sadly, he's misspelled it in his title), a somewhat controversial hallucinogenic drink which was reported as being responsible for the death in Colombia of a young British student in 2014.

Given the legs-folded, intimate nature of the gig as well as the subject matter, this is as close as this year's Fringe would have got to recreating the conditions of a student house party (of the 60s / 70s vintage). This is further heightened when Waterstones and a man in the front row (almost everyone is in the front row) take time out from the show to discuss their favourite narcotics.

At 40 minutes long, it doesn't feel as though Waterstones has a huge amount of confidence in either himself or his show, and when he reads out our earlier written suggestions to the question: 'what would you change about August?' without having anything especially funny to add, it just adds up to a bad trip.

Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters, run ended.

The Ayahuasca Diaries

  • 2 stars

Benji Waterstones Shrink and award-winning comedian Benji Waterstones heads to Peru in search of ayahuasca, a healing hallucinogenic so strong that just one dose has been likened to 15 years of therapy. So, is it the magic pill he craves? A funny and moving account of one self-help junkie's search for happiness.

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