Comedy review: Edd Hedges, Wonderland

Edinburgh Festival Fringe: It seems cruel to suggest Edd Hedges is holding back. The former So You Think You're Funny winner was involved in a traumatising drama, and barely a year later, he's recounting it on stage as his debut comedy hour.

Gilded Balloon (Venue 14)

***

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A bullied, lonely child who grew up in a quiet East Anglia village, he endured a difficult relationship with his father, whose rages led to regular beatings for the boy. Now 23, Hedges recounts all this in a non-judgemental, matter-of-fact tone, filling in the background to his narrative with carefully established detail, building up anticipation for the events he’s about to share.

A competent storyteller, he places greater emphasis on scene-setting than packing his hour with jokes, though there’s a well-delivered account of the fallout from him winning a coconut at a local fair. When it finally arrives, the denouement is suitably incredible, though there are confusing aspects and an irresistible internet search afterwards leaves you none the wiser.

Hedges claims he tells two lies in the course of the show, but having confessed these, you suspect that can’t be the real total. A slip of the tongue referring to a character suggests names have been changed to protect identities. Intriguing.

Until 27 August. Today 4pm.