Scottish Comedian of the Year Final 2014
O2 ABC, Glasgow
Musical comic Harry Garrison was the standout crowd favourite, but under a system that incorporated both audience voting and the will of a panel of judges, with opaque respective weighting, justice was done and the title went to Bruce Fummey.
A stalwart of the Scottish circuit, the Perthshire comic ingratiated with an easy affability, playing up his patriotism and fondness for Glasgow over Edinburgh, but with mischievous twists that stopped short of currying favour.
As a Afro-Celt, he plays with, rather than relies on stereotype. And it was the referendum and the No campaign’s scare tactics, plus its relation to Glasgow sectarianism that afforded his set real meat, before he closed entertainingly on the perversity of his learning Gaelic.
Relegated to second, Garrison might consider himself unlucky, as his guitar-accompanied song about an evil badger entertained and delivered variety on a twelve-strong bill largely comprised of conventional stand-ups. However, his sweetly singing psychopath shtick lacks originality and in content and delivery he came across as a tribute act to US comic Stephen Lynch.
Another amiable performer from rural Perthshire, farmer Jim Smith, deservedly took third.
Credit goes to Liam Withnail for owning his Englishness, Allan Lindsay for his topicality, and the frequently incomprehensible, banana costume sporting Duncan Guthrie for edging out Rosco “McSkeleton” McClelland in the bizarre, never-going-to-win-it stakes.
Seen on 28.09.14