Latitude Review: Al Murray Pub Landlord

Bridget Christie recently said that she has torn up the script for her latest show and is busily writing a new hour in time for Edinburgh to tackle her shock at the Referendum vote. Al Murray is going out on a UK tour this autumn so it’ll be interesting to see how he addresses an issue, given that “Back off Brussels” and a general air of mock Europhobia has been part of the Pub Landlord’s act for the past two decades. Has the joke bitten him on the bum?

At Latitude he had a chance to test the waters, though I suspect this crowd was much more pro-Remain than some of the fans he might attract on tour. And maybe this will not come as much of a surprise, but the bulldog-faced comic stormed the gig with his musings on national identity after declaring that “We told Brussels to do one!”

There was, of course, plenty of trademark banter with the audience. On encountering a receptionist he pulled out a typically quickfire response: “secretary with a telephone.” A marketing student had to take the full force of Murray’s rage at his chosen profession. Nobody ever needed to market spoons, you just used one when you wanted some soup. Murray’s logic might not stand up to much scrutiny but it didn’t stop him being lager-snortingly funny.

If chunks of this set were old dusted off routines – it is always a pleasure to hear him do his four different Scottish accents – he ended with an insanely breathless riff about the endless waves of immigration that have hit Britain’s shores over the years and made it the great country that it is. This will surely be a centrepiece of his new show. Blimey. Who would have thought that the Pub Landlord was pro-immigration. Strange times indeed. And when Murray is onstage very funny times too.

More Latitude Reviews here.

 

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