Joe Lycett – Edinburgh Festival review

One of the more hotly tipped newcomers this year, Joe Lycett, doesn’t sweep EiF’s correspondent off her feet

Joe_Lycett2Lycett is here with his pun-intended but -purposeless ‘Some Lycett Hot’. The name tickled me though, I’ll admit: and he’s very upfront about it having no bearing on the show whatsoever.

Ostensibly he’s here to tell us about ‘gender’ – which mostly amounts to him stating that he’s bisexual and wondering whether he’s enough of a manly man. The usual derision for the general population ensues.

It’s fine, it’s funny – but it’s a straight-up, no-frills kind of funny. Jokes about pissing and misfunctioning penises abound. As a performer Lycett is confident, indolent, and a bit of a bitch. He likes a moan or two and does his audience down here and there, a la standard stand-up. The lines are a bit lazy, and his snipey bitchery isn’t quite clever enough to make it likeable. A section near the end detailing an email exchange between an expletively-minded viewer and himself is fun, but could have done with coming sooner.

He does fall back again and again on various correspondences between himself and some unfortunate, less whimsical recipient – usually the council. Parking tickets are disputed and Waitrose is berated. These are by far the best parts of the show and should have formed the backbone of the narrative. As it is, they feel like they were thrown in for when the one-liners had run out, and the audience had been milked for enough mild humiliation for one ten-minute section. It feels like Lycett missed a trick opting for a title based around a pun rather than a theme – especially when it seems like there’s one lurking right under his nose.

Overall however, people did laugh, which does count. I didn’t, but then it’s not my kind of comedy. I Lycett it hot, but I want it smart, too.

3 stars
• Joe Lycett – Some Lycett Hot is on at 8.30pm at the Pleasance Courytard
Review written by Sarah Sharp

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