Laughterhouse Comedy: Richard Herring at the Epstein Theatre
Warning: Contains knob jokes
I’ve always thought of myself as someone who likes a good laugh, so I was stunned when a couple of months ago I was watching TV with my offspring and child no.1 said, “Mum, you really hate comedians, don’t you?”
It was honestly a massive shock. Me? Hate comedians? And then I went through a list of people who I’d ranted about in a rather unpleasant manner recently; Michael McIntyre, Miranda bloody Hart and that Irish geezer who does Mrs Brown’s Boys. If that’s comedians, I thought, you can shove ’em.
So when I was planning my Autumn cultural agenda, I thought it might be a good idea to give comedians another go. I saw Richard Herring was on at the newly refurbished Epstein Theatre and booked the tickets. He’s been on telly and I don’t remember hating him, I thought.
What I didn’t realise was that I’d got tickets to see Herring’s Talking Cock: The Second Coming show. Written to give a male slant on The Vagina Monologues, Herring has taken the results of over 10,000 anonymous online surveys into the views of men and women on the penis and made the most entertaining hour and a bit I’ve spent for ages.
It’s an object of shame and pride; it can inspire laughter and fear; it’s a symbol of power, yet it’s incredibly fragile and weak; it can be a pound of flesh or an ounce of winkles, it can be used to express both love and hate; it creates life, it can condemn us to death… and it can do wees as well.
Delivered in a rat-tat-tat of quick fire delivery, Herring’s show was vastly entertaining, highly engaging and very, very funny. I belly laughed through almost the whole thing. Providing statistics for and comments to questions such as “Who is the captain of your ship, you or your penis?” and “Have you ever openly laughed at a man’s genitals?” and interspersed with facts about the penis throughout history, the show was simply brilliant.
Afterwards, he stayed behind in the lobby flogging his own merchandise out of a plastic box and being rather charming with everyone who fancied a chat with him.
It was an entirely satisfying evening and it’s made me not completely hate all comedians. Although, please don’t ask me to like Mrs Brown’s Boys. I’ve got to draw the line somewhere.
I should also take some time to note the venue. The Epstein has been done up so well, its original spirit so well kept and it is a perfect venue. Original and gorgeous, it’s small enough to feel quite intimate and you can feel its history oozing out of its decadently decorated walls.
The newly opened Brian’s bar makes a lovely setting for pre/mid/post show drinkies and the whole vibe of the place is a good one. Well worth a visit.
You can fill in Richard Herring’s online penis survey and maybe have your answers included in an upcoming how.
Check out upcoming comedy events at Laughterhouse Comedy
Check out what’s new at the Epstein Theatre