Review: Jigsaw: Gettin’ Jiggy, Pleasance Courtyard (Venue 33)

Lovingly crafted, with attention to detail and a rich seam of inventiveness, Jigsaw’s return to the Fringe is an enjoyably pacy romp through a succession of very funny sketches. Without any overarching concept or theme, little in the way of props or behind-the-character tensions, Gettin’ Jiggy is simply a straightforward series of skits.

* * * *

The trio of Dan Antopolski, Tom Craine and Nat Luurtsema capably sustain their build-up of energetic good humour with slick, seamless segues from one set-piece to the next, prioritising consistent laughs over any high-falutin’ concepts or pauses for thought. There are recurring storylines, Antopolski’s gallery of mythical figures popping up inappropriately in a teenage girl’s bedroom and Craine conning passers-by into extracting a semen sample being highlights. But they’re never predictable, with each performer delivering a broad range of characters and contributing even when they’re lurking behind their tiny yet adequate stage.

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Only occasionally do they break the fourth wall – Craine voicing his displeasure at getting soaked in the course of a punchline; the rare occasion in which Antopolski engages directly with a woman in the crowd, a well-meaning Luurtsema actively ruining any prospect he has of taking the relationship further.

Some of the scenarios are more satisfying than others, with the therapist who uses funk music to treat his patient a performance-based routine that builds up the laughs incrementally. Still, it’s hard to think of a duff sketch in their entire repertoire. Moreover, such is the vital energy that they’re into the next scene before you’d even have an opportunity to notice.

Of the three, who each made their names as stand-ups, only the previous work of Antopolski suggested that they would take to the format so well. Their future is probably in the live arena but they’ve delivered a tremendous package of vignettes here for a generation increasingly attuned to the three-minute YouTube laugh.

Until 27 August. Today 4:45pm.