Comedy review: Des Bishop: Grey Matters

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Des Bishop is officially knocking on a bit. He turned 40 recently and it has got him thinking. Luckily for us, most of what Des has been thinking is hilariously funny. He is unmarried, has no kids, is a fantastic uncle and looks back on his own childhood with great fondness.

Rating: ****

Venue: Pleasance Dome (Venue 23)

By the time he has finished this section of the show, every parent in the room is longing for a return to the simpler days when you could smack your kids, they would play outside and you didn’t have to tell them they were special if they’re not. His relationship with his audience – even a big one like this – is a joy to watch. No one heckles, as such, they just chat to him out of the darkness. “Northern Ireland or the north of Ireland?” he asks one bloke who has said he comes from Northern Ireland during what he calls “the sectarian section of the show”. A young Australian in the front row gets an education in “getting your hole” as it was when Des was a lad, strewn with the perils of landlines and seatbelt etiquette. And then, via a brutally funny detour into bedwetting and a roomful of men looking at their feet and denying they had ever suffered from erectile dysfunction, Uncle Des talks dirty. And Des gives great dirt. We get hotel sex and performance anxiety, fresh sheets as a domestic passion killer, the logistics of period sex and the complicated nature of the female sexual appetite, all wrapped around the poignant tale of his thwarted night of passion with a famous actress.

He even goes where few comics have dared, to make lubrication comedy his own. I am left with an image of what Des calls “little Seamus”. Which is probably wrong. But sooooooooo funny.

• Until 28 August. Today 8pm

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