ON ANOTHER night in front of a different crowd, Pearse James might have gone down a storm.
The Stand, Glasgow
There’s definitely a market for his daft surrealist chatter, but the modest Fun Junkies Wednesday gathering was not wholly willing to take his shtick to its heart. True, there was some material that either needed major surgery or strangled at birth, but there was enough spirited lunacy to suggest that a strong writer might take him to rosier pastures. The fact that he at no point made any reference to his absurdly tight running trousers also counts in his favour.
Our host for the evening, Ray Bradshaw, is on something of a mission. He’s working hard on a show in which he gets people to set a dare for him. There are some ground rules he’s been forced to lay down to omit any possibility of overly illegal activity or amputation, but other than that, pretty much anything goes.
The sketch trio How Do I Get Up There? once more achieved the goal they set before every show: to get an audience to the very point of damaging themselves. In a good way. As a threesome, Chris Forbes (the tall, young Russell Brand one), James Kirk (the stocky ginger one who earns the crowd’s sympathy vote) and Kevin Mains (the relatively regular one with great projection) have a penchant for medical situations, musicals, TV game shows and psychological trauma. Quite how far they will get up the showbiz ladder is anyone’s guess, but they have the material and the chemistry to take it as high as they wish.