Brutally honest Jeremy brings authentic comedy to Warwick Arts Centre

Jeremy Hardy, Warwick Arts Centre, November 25.

I HAVE now just about accepted that when go to see a comedian, you sign a Faustian pact. You take the laughter in exchange for the mind-numbing plug for their DVD or book. Christmas is coming. Get used to it.

So when I left Warwick Arts Centre on Sunday night after listening to Jeremy Hardy, I felt relieved. At last – an entertainer who is honest, direct (sometimes brutally) and funny. And unlikely to reappear in an Australian jungle when he needs an ego boost.

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He started the show by admitting he had no idea what he was going to talk about. There is no set routine here, he added. Frustrating to some, but I could not be happier.

This was not a sales pitch but an authentic two hours of comedy.

Sure, his views (or preachings as he admitted) might be so left wing that even Hugo Chavez would swirm uncomfortably. And his ambling style might be misinterpreted as somewhat unprofessional. But to me – and to the rest of the audience by my calculations – it was exactly the right tone.

Most people will have been introduced to Jeremy through Radio 4, notably the News Quiz. And if you are a listener of delicate nature (and yes, I know how patronising that sounds), be prepared for a lot of swearing. It is not without context but it could be an uncomfortable two hours for those who are more used to his cleaner style of weekly satirical banter with Sandi Toksvig.

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I enjoyed it so much I was even prepared to overlook the direct **** off he aimed at some people who review his shows (now who is the one sitting uncomfortably).

I would wholeheartedly recommend the show - unless you’re a Tory without a sense of humour.

Phil Hibble

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