Brighton Fringe 2013
JOANNA NEARY KNEADS AN AUDIENCE… AND GEORGE EGG HAS SOMETHING TO PROVE
Jo Neary and George Egg
Venue: Bom-Bane’s Cafe
The duo alternated between Egg’s gently risible tales of his youth and Neary’s savagely funny caricatures, and the two’s differing styles offset each other nicely: George’s laconic delivery versus Jo’s manic energy.
“Russell Neary” was a brilliantly brutal parody of Russell Howard, complete with mad blonde wig and inane observations on life, it was like the over-hyped comedian was in the room!
Neary’s other hilarious caricatures included an overzealous charity shop manager and an ever-so-slightly flakey Brighton artist, the latter pointing out the ridiculous issues besetting Open Houses “The problem with Brighton is there are too many artists, and not enough art buyers.”
Egg’s routines were a departure from his mostly physical prop-driven stand-up, reading from his childhood diary and recounting his dad’s obsession with hoarding obsolete technologies. These were calmer, more tender tales which lulled the audience into a false sense of nostalgia, only to be shattered with his shocking dénouement letter to a former girlfriend.
The second half saw the pair team-up in a radio play parodying the classic Brief Encounter, with Jo doing her best Celia Johnson impression. Based around a chance meeting in the “Fakery Bakery” section of her local supermarket, a woman literally falls into the arms of a pastry chef.
Both Neary and Egg played a huge number of roles, aided with numerous props, and the story managed to get in a few jabs at “Fresco’s” supermarkets and the death of the high street, without resorting to worthy preaching. Neary shone in this half, whereas Egg seemed slightly less comfortable, but performed admirably, nether-the-less, acting as the stoic foil.
The whole show had more a feel of a sketch show rather than a stand-up, with a wide variety of material, and was better for it. The pair even gave away a little mini-fanzine featuring tips on how to make bread on an iron and comic strip by Jo.
The show was so much fun that we stopped taking notes and just sat back and enjoyed it, and considering one of us doesn’t even like traditional comedy clubs, we can’t think of a better compliment than that.
All in all a thoroughly fun evening full of genuine belly laughs and wry observations.