Comedy review: The Inane Chicanery of a Certain Adam GC Riches

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Edinburgh Festival Fringe: Back performing solo again, to his usual high standards of nonsense, Adam Riches is sat miming some intense piano as the audience enters.

Pleasance Dome (Venue 23)

****

Dressed in a kilt, and with Celtic swagger, the macho actor he’s chosen to send up this year is Scotland’s very own Gerard Butler, a tricky act of parody given the subject matter, yet one he channels into his first, chaotic bit of audience participation, involving some William Tell-style marksmanship.

With anyone in a broad radius of the target a potential victim of the scattershot skit, it’s a rambunctious start to the hour, but not the most quicksilver of Riches’ career. The unfortunate mark he’s plucked from the front row is not the sharpest in intuiting his directions. That’s a trend carried into a reprisal of his Guy You Meet After A Long Term Relationship character, with a woman failing to pick up his cues. Of course, that’s part of the appeal of a Riches show and he’s in his element scrambling to ad-lib. More-over, he has more luck with the intimate daftness he asks a young lad to endure with his singing hobo, The Drifter, this game young man getting right onboard with the character’s catchphrase and borderline perverted request.

He also strikes gold with the expressive couple he picks to declare their love for each other on his person, the characteristics of alter-ego Royston Baldcock III not worth mentioning beyond his love of calligraphy and hilariously breathy adoration of the lost art of penmanship. Performing some stunt BMX hi-jinks without a bike but still plenty of jeopardy, before a truly committed and genuinely disgusting finale, Inane Chicanery is a chaotic, knockabout farce with flashes of strong, character-establishing writing beneath the improvised unpredictability.

Until tomorrow. Today 9:45pm.