Fringe Comedy review: Dan Antopolski - Return of the Dan Antopolski

Dan Antopolski - Return of the Dan Antopolski | Assembly George Square Studios (Venue 17) | Star rating: ***

Returning to stand-up here for the first time in seven years, nothing has changed with Dan Antopolski and everything has changed. Separated from his long-term partner, losing his mother and entering another relationship, the most important thing in his life is now his daughters rather than his expendable testicles.

He’s still the same gifted, frustrating comic he always was, with some daft, inspired lines and surreal playfulness, his fondness for wordplay evidenced by his love of a good simile. But as so often with this capricious wit, the show doesn’t really knit together, his ironic, fragmented style and desire to wrong-foot making for an uneven hour.

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That’s a pity because he’s actually horribly compelling on the breakdown of a relationship – brilliant on the three reasons physical touching finished for them and the way he’s become a test case for unhappy parents at his children’s school.

As he approaches 45, there’s arguably newfound maturity in the personal material and he’s deft enough to wring both pathos and hilarity from his mother’s passing. Ultimately though, Antopolski doesn’t really trust in it, seeking the silly whenever he can.

• Until 27 August.