Edinburgh festival review – Reginald D Hunter

Reginald D Hunter’s latest offering doesn’t have the same insight of clever phraseology of his previous shows, writes a disappointed Julian Hall.

reginald_d_hunter1After a delay of thirty minutes to the start of his show, due to missing his own alarm clock, Reg Hunter readies himself to play a gig, fully sober, to hundreds of “slightly angry people”.

Though he soon puts the audience at ease with his languid conversational style, and his soothing tones placate the audience, it’s fair to say he never has them in the palm of his hand.

Many of Hunter’s moniker themes are here tonight: race (how white people like to have an ethnic friend to arbiter what is racist and what is not) and relationships (men don’t like to play games in order to score). Meanwhile there are curious takes on bullying in schools and the etiquette of giving up your seat on public transport for a pregnant woman.

While the two latter areas could be considered as unusual, for a large part of the show Hunter’s material offers few surprises and his joke rhythms contrast sharply to many of the skillful subversions I have heard on the Fringe this year. Moreover, while some of his even-toned musings are often interesting they often lack the insight and clever phraseology of his previous shows.

Something approaching an uninterrupted momentum only gathers towards the end in a section that includes a frank but fair assessment of the pilloried golfer Tiger Woods, imagining him returning from amid the furore as if her were some unrepentant gangsta figure.

Not unlike Tiger Woods, this show is mostly below par and it is one in which Hunter’s skills struggle to come to the fore.

Two stars
Reginald D Hunter: Trophy Nigga is on at 8pm at the Pleasance Courtyard, click here for booking.

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