Edinburgh Festival Fringe: Dane Baptiste has the potential to be one of the UK’s top comics, perhaps even the US’s too if his BBC Three sitcom isn’t recommissioned.
Pleasance Courtyard (Venue 33)
He’s got a great show in him but G.O.D. isn’t it. The abbreviated words in his title indicate the reach of his ambition, exploring the extent to which gold, oil and drugs have become quasi-religious goals for society.
Had this triumvirate been less strictly adhered to, he might have triumphed, as his opening section on economics is smart, timely and punchily hilarious, a supremely impressive 20-minute set. Sharp analogies, like money being the deadbeat father in his life, stand alongside inventive euphemisms, with Baptiste brilliantly flitting between the convictions of an authoritative sage and the reluctant disclosures of a would-be player who still keeps an eye on his overdraft.
There are tremendous variations between routines, from fake ads for his income sidelines to a persecuted male critique of the song No Scrubs. Generally funny on religion too, the Catholic-raised comic loses focus when it comes to oil, too indistinct from gold to support the same depth of comic analysis, before drugs desperately segues into disconnected musings on fulfilment and morality.
Until 27 August. Today 9pm.