Jonny Pelham: Fool’s Paradise

As the son of two psychotherapists, it’s not surprising Jonny Pelham is prone to introspection and self-examination. Pelham’s second Edinburgh hour is a journey into his anxiety-ridden mind. Jumping from his early days as one of the few white kids at school, to his experiences of being at the same university as Princess Eugenie, we get a glimpse of how Pelham’s past shaped his present uncertain state. Pelham is quick to put himself down, although his stories are always told with an endearing warmth and the confidence of a natural comic.

You can see how Pelham’s mind can sometimes get him into trouble. At times he counterbalances the likable-misfit material with riskier gags that reveals Pelham’s darker side. These jokes, discussing racism at his school and pedophilia, divided the room, although the quality of the writing and Pelham’s mellow demeanor prevented the room turning against him completely. Pelham’s honesty is perhaps his most endearing quality.

Jonny Pelham provides a fine hour of stand-up with strong writing and gags, free of gimmickry and life-lessons. Definitely one to keep an eye on.

★★★★

Stuart Addison

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