During the week, me and Liam went to go and see Ricky Gervais in Brighton. It was my first time seeing him live, but Liam had seen him a while ago when we were at University.
I had some idea of what to expect from Ricky’s show, having seen snippets of his previous shows, but I wasn’t fully prepared for just how funny it would be! My face actually hurt afterwards from laughing.
But first, let’s talk about the support act. I was really excited when I saw on the Brighton Centre website that Ricky’s support act was none other than Doc Brown (y’know, the guy with the tea rap who is also in Life on the Road). I love the tea rap, and the other stand up material I’ve seen of his has generally made me chuckle. Unfortunately, this time round Doc’s material didn’t quite hit the mark.
The reason being that the stories he told were too long, and you knew the punchline to a couple of the jokes already. He also spent a significant part of his short set talking about his experience as a parent. Not only is that a pet peeve of mine in comedy because it’s so overdone, he really brought nothing new to the table with it.
I think the experience was also marred by SO MANY people coming in late and shining their phones around all over the place trying to find their seat. Obviously, that’s not Doc Brown’s fault but it did detach you from his material and he did little to reel you back in. It’s a real shame, because I thought Doc being the support was a nice added bonus, but really I found myself just waiting for Ricky to make an entrance.
At about 8:15, Ricky hit the stage and the following one and a half hours were brilliant. I don’t want to spoil too much in terms of what he talked about, but let’s just say this is not a show for the easily offended. But if you follow Ricky on Twitter, you should know this already.
The great thing about his comedy is that he’s so good at taking fire at those who are offended by everything. A great example he gives is of a post he shared on his Twitter depicting heinous animal cruelty being carried out by two men. He describes the two men with some… colourful language.
One of the responses he gets to the tweet is a woman complaining about him using the ‘c’ word. She’s more offended by that word than the disgusting mistreatment of a dog. It’s dark subject matter, but his telling of the experience makes you laugh because you just cannot believe the misplaced offence of it.
Mixed in with his Twitter tales is more personal material, talking about his upbringing in Reading and about his family. He manages to jump from one topic to the next pretty well (probably because the vast majority of his show is quite firmly scripted), and you never lose interest.
He too has a section of his show about parenting, but let’s just say it’s a very different perspective to his warm-up act. And it’s hilarious.
For someone who hasn’t done a stand-up show for seven years, you wouldn’t know it. It’s incredibly funny but does also make you think about the world we live in. But not in a depressing way, but instead in a “lol some people are idiots” way.
Go see the show if you can – unless you are a delicate snowflake, in which case you may want to give it a miss.