Jonny Pelham: ‘My show will be pretty good throughout’

Edinburgh intros #25: Here’s a dude who seems to be more interested in bigging up the NHS, his late cocker spaniel, and his very supportive parents, than his show. Which is kinda nice 

Jonny Pelham1. Hi Jonny! Tell us a bit about the show.
Hello! So the show is called Before and After. When I was 16 the NHS offered me surgery to realign my jaw. But the weird thing about it was that it was a purely cosmetic thing, there was no health benefits to it other than it would improve my appearance, so the show is about being offered the surgery and trying to decide whether or not I liked how I looked and whether or not I should get the operation, then deciding to get it (spoiler alert, although it is called before and after so you know) and the impact getting the operation has had on my life.

2. What’s your favourite bit?
I’m not sure really. I like that I think it is going to be pretty good throughout, which was not the case a couple of months ago.

3. If your show were a dog, what breed would it be?
I spent about five minutes trying to come up with a funny answer for this but the truth is I don’t really know a lot about different breeds of dog, so I am going to say cocker spaniel, because I used to have a cocker spaniel and she deserves to be remembered.

4. What’s your walk-on music going to be?
I really don’t know. Probably something cool by a cool band that I would never actually listen to but would like other people to think I listen to.

5. Who will you be living with and how do you expect that to go?
I am living with Peter Brush, Phil Ellis and Carl Hutchinson who are all excellent people and excellent comics. I think it is going to be a lovely experience all round.

6. What will your Edinburgh daily routine be?
The plan is to drink a lot less than last year and watch a lot of the cricket. I am sure I will watch a lot of cricket, but I fear I will often end up doing it hungover.

7. Have you enjoyed previous Fringes? A lot of comics seem to find it tough at times.
Last year was a bit shit – can you say shit? If you can’t say shit then I apologise and will leave it to you to sub in more a appropriate word: rubbish, not good, unpleasant, the world’s your oyster. But on the whole they tend to be good and I am very much looking forward to this year.

8. So who was this arsehole who asked if you wanted cosmetic surgery, and would you like an LiF representative to go round their house and duff them up?
It was the NHS. My jaw was unaligned and I had an underbite so it was a medical condition, it wasn’t just a random doctor wandering around Asda who spotted me and thought Jesus Christ someone needs to make him look better. I do think it is a really good thing that the NHS offer it, because a lot of people with underbites really struggle with self-esteem and self-confidence and having the surgery really improves their lives. So please don’t duff them up. [Soz, slight misunderstanding about this this end – Ed.]

9. Solid quotes. Pedigree in the new acts comps. Does this feel like the big boy shit now, doing the debut show?
I see you can say shit. Fucking hell, I feel like a square for even asking now, of course you can swear this is the bloody 21st century. Piss, Crap, bollocks. In answer to your question, doing a solo show does feel a bit different. In previous years I have done compilation shows, but having your name on the poster and having to speak for an hour does motivate you to make sure it is not shit. There has definitely been more prep this year.

10. What do your therapist parents think about you being a stand-up comedian?
They are very supportive. But they are the sort of parents who would be supportive whatever I did. When I was about 14 I really got into rap music and started rapping a lot and they were always encouraging about that too, even though they must have had their doubts, so who knows what they really think.

Jonny Pelham: Before and After is at the Pleasance Courtyard at 6.45pm, follow him on Twitter at @jonnypelham22

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