Comedy review: Dave Johns: I, Fillum Star

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Edinburgh Festival Fringe: “Are you from the fillums?” people ask Dave Johns in his native Newcastle (“like it was a place”) and, yes, the veteran stand-up is now best-known as the lead of Ken Loach’s Palme d’Or winning film I, Daniel Blake.

Pleasance Dome (Venue 23)


The benefits are clear; he now gets to perform to larger audiences (you doubt Kirsty Wark would have been so keen to see him perform late night at The Stand a couple of years ago) and he has got new experiences to talk about.

Some of these are very funny, some you doubt the veracity of and some are just a bunch of stuff that happened with a famous person in the room. Johns can still sell the weaker anecdotes by virtue of his innate likability (the accent helps too) and, while he looks a little stunned by his new-found fame, this is by no means an exercise in self-aggrandisement (he’s a much better actor than he will ever realise). However, Johns strongest talent was always the ability to react to the unexpected and bounce off the audience. Playing larger rooms somewhat robs him of this ability, but that is the price of fame, right there.

Until 27 August. Today 7pm.