Flange Krammer – Edinburgh Fringe review

German skier and ladies’ man starts well then goes downhill quickly

Flange KrammerHow much you’ll like this show depends on how much you like laboured puns, wildly celebrated. Flange Krammer – German skiing sensation and incorrigible ladies’ man – is doing just that every day on the Laughing Horse Free Fringe with some degree of success, though this hour was blighted by so many technical hitches that he needs to get his act together before long.

Neil Dagley completely inhabits Krammer as this pleasingly ridiculous character, who spends about the first 20 minutes telling dodgy jokes then following them up with his signature: some air-punching, shouting “eat powder!” at someone on the front row and taking a swig from a can of his apparent sponsor, Power Horse.

It’s absurd, it’s fun and his cheerful enthusiasm sweeps you along, even if you’d rather hear genuinely good jokes that don’t require elaborate signals to laugh. And if you like double entrendres – this is your show, as they come thick and fast. I defy you not to find Wolfgang Bang an amusing name.

But an hour is a lot of strain to put on what is a limited act, and it does tire, at some point during Call my Muff (an initially very funny fake porn films quiz). An hour is also a long time to accommodate cheerful amateurism, even if he did style out his many tech problems better than most comics. Krammer makes use of the TVs on the Espionage walls to show clips of Ted Rogers from 80s game show 3, 2, 1 – a reference that appeared to baffle most of the room. The clips were chopped up to add to the barrage of double entendres, but were invariably in the wrong place, too quiet or clumsily edited. And there were loads of them too. Absolutely bloody loads of them. That’s a heavy burden of humour on an obscure name.

This was the first show of Krammer’s run, so some scratchiness is to be expected, but even so – a vital prop completely forgotten, another rendered useless as he hadn’t bought any batteries, skipping through a huge chunk of it as he was running so far behind? If he wasn’t so charming this would have been a waste of a lot of people’s time, as he simply did not have control of the show.

2 stars
Review written by Paul Fleckney

• Dre, Zwei, Eins mit Flange Krammer is on at the Laughing Horse @ Espionage, at 5pm

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