Justin Moorhouse: Northern Joker
Gilded Balloon Teviot
As Justin said at the start, after a show of hands to indicate where the audience had travelled from, why would so many of us go all the way to Edinburgh to see someone we might bump into near to where we live?
But then this is a show in which northern pride, in particular Manchester pride, plays a large part, but that doesn't stop him from making a few gentle jibes at the expense of his fellow Mancunians (especially those migrants who move down south). It also doesn't stop him from taking in a wide variety of subjects, including (obviously) Trump and Brexit, his admiration for Putin (clearly not quite how it seems) and families.
His own family now includes a 21-year-old son at university and a new creature that he is struggling to cope with: a 13-year-old daughter. There are plenty of laughs at their expense, including a comparison between taking his family on a plane to California and his own childhood holidays all squashed into a Cortina, setting off in the early hours of the morning to beat the traffic.
Moorhouse can flit from subject to subject almost without you noticing. It all comes across with the ease of a chat with a bloke in the pub, but there is some skilful crafting of structure, timing and delivery to make it all fit together. Even if he has a go at someone in the audience, he glances back with that cheeky schoolboy smile to show it's all in fun.
There are a few serious moments, such as his explanations of his reluctance to become a celebrity commenter on the Manchester bomb immediately after it happened, but mostly he keeps the laughs coming for an hour. And you don't have to be Northern to appreciate it.
Reviewer: David Chadderton