Surprisingly, it looks like I might be the first to get one of these up from last night. Darren, Lottie, Little Miss, Darragh and McG (that's right, I pretty much only speak to bloggers these days) must all be busy with 'work' or some such nonsense. or else they don't think that strangers off the internet want to hear about what we did last night. Which is clearly wrong.
Anyway, before Stephen lynch could be enjoyed by a packed-out and madupforit Olympia, there was to be a support-act. 'That's grand,' I thought 'I've seen some very good support acts at comedy shows. The one at Colin Murphy's show last year was arguably better than the man himself. Though, naturally I don't remember his name.' But, bewilderingly, the people behind the Bulmers comedy festival (that'll be the one and only time you hear that brand name mentioned on this blog) chose to give the slot to Ruth-Anne Cunningham. Have you heard of her? I just about had, but only because I read too many Sunday newspaper supplements. And then, inexplicably, re-read them months later, picking up new and entirely pointless tidbits of information, such as the very existence of Ms.Cunningham. She had claimed to be Ireland's most succesful songwriter, or some such preposterous bollocks. So she bounces onstage wearing a dress that looked a lot like the one who brought her brother to her debs wore and trills "Just so you know, I'm not a comedian" in a D4 accent that confuses me slightly, given that she's from Donaghmede. The boos start immediately, though she does get a certain amount of rather patronising cheering as she launches into her first number. It's a Stevie Wonder song apparently, though she manages to bland the shite out of it so badly that it makes Stevie look like Marilyn Manson in comparison. The blandality (that's a hybrid of 'bland' and 'banality' that I've just cunningly devised, in honour of Ruth-Anne) continues with several other monstrously dull songs that she 'co-wrote with this, like, amazing guy who wrote for Diana Ross.' Diana Ross, in fairness, had an extraordinary voice, whereas Ruth-Anne, bless her, is ordinary at best. The missus and I both agree that we know people who could do a better job. Fortunately, this fiasco only lasts about twenty minutes, with a huge roar of approval greeting the announcement of her last song.
We stumble, dazedly, over to the rest of our cohorts when she exits the stage. "Why?", I ask, head in hands. "Well she had lovely legs" offers Darren. No, Darren, they were only nice legs, she couldn't manage to be interesting enough to have lovely ones.
Lynch appears onstage to a hero's welcome, and goes on to fully justify this. His opening song 'Waiting (For My AIDS Test to Come Back)' sets the tone for the evening and it's a riot from then on in. Songs about Nazi girlfriends, anal sex, retarded children, little gay robots and cocaine smuggling follow. All go down an absolute storm, as do his brief musical prods at Anne Frank and Christopher Reeve. It's possible that the Olympia was just stuffed with horrible, tasteless bastards but I've always felt that sometimes the best way to approach a sensitive topic is to mercilessly rip into it. It's why I hate being called a 'Proddy bastard' in a certain tone of voice but hoot with laughter at it at other times. It's why an Indian mate of mine will refer to himself as a Paki and rolls around the place when I start my Apu from The Simpsons impressions. And it's why Lynch gets some of the biggest laughs of the night when he makes a Holocaust crack to his Jewish sidekick, culminating in a glorious reconciliation to the tune of Purple Rain - fulfilling a Prince fantasy that Lynch had spoken of earlier in the show.
Overall, a relentlessly funny hour and a half of comedy, for most of which Lynch was alone onstage. He is a truly brilliant performer, eager to please his audience but strong enough to deal with a number of tirelessly idiotic hecklers. These people obviously consider themselves to be more amusing than the main attraction, but surely the way to prove that would be to get onstage themselves, rather than paying 30 quid to sit in the auditorium and piss off the majority of the audience. Assholes. Anyone going to Lynch tonight is in for a treat, I imagine it'll be quite a different set as he didn't even use a lot of his material last night. Bit of 'Altar Boy' tonight if they're lucky. And I'll be working. Yay.
Update: My mistake at the top, Darragh actually got in there first with his cracking review. His has actual pictures and factual accuracy. It also includes a picture of Ms. Cunningham, so you can make your own mind up about the loveliness/niceness of her legs. Darragh, nice fella that he is, shows a lot more sympathy for her than I do. I suppose he's right, she'd go down an absolute storm at o2 Party in the Park.