[star rating =5/5]
IT WAS twenty five years ago when Irish comedian Andrew Maxwell first played at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe – a gig in which he was “dying on his arse” in front of seven people. Twenty five years later, and having played the festival every subsequent year, he is back again playing in front of a packed audience and making them laugh – hard.
Maxwell once hosted a programme called ‘Conspiracy Road Trip’ in which he took people who had particularly unique beliefs in things like UFOs or creationism on a road trip to better understand their belief system. In this show, Maxwell takes the audience on a journey to explore and dissect the big issues and opinions of today, with Brexit being a focus of his.
The comedian puts his cards on table regarding how he feels about Brexit. Some of the biggest laughs of the night comes from his analysis of the UK’s decision to leave the EU and the general how and why behind that decision.
It is by no means a bashing of leave voters, if anything, just like Conspiracy Road Trip, it’s Maxwell’s way of trying to genuinely understand beliefs different to his own.
His focus on Brexit leads beautifully into many of the comedian’s ‘funny because it’s true’ observations about different countries’ cultures and customs.
When Maxwell moves away from current affairs, he steers towards his personal life. Stories about his family, his job as a narrator for ‘Ex on the Beach’ and that friend we all have who we regard as an “eejit” are parts of the show which are packed with laughs but also a lot of heart.
“I really hope you find this funny” Maxwell tells the audience as he builds some of his longer stories detail by detail. The audience find it funny every time, the punchlines are fantastically satisfying and worth the suspense.
Twenty five years on from his first fringe, Maxwell is a confident professional with a brand of comedy that demands sincere laughter and deep thought from his audience.