Paul Merton – Out of My Head

Over the years, Paul Merton has carved himself a well-worn niche on Have I Got News for You. He’s also a veteran Comedy Store Player, and his current show draws on that tradition.

There are throwbacks to the days of Whose Line is it Anyway? – from the appearance of Richard Vranch at the piano, to impro based on the audience’s suggestions, with Suki Webster and Lee Simpson joining in a surreal sketch about animals and sports chosen by the circle and stalls.  

This may sound like something Merton and the gang could do in their sleep, but this show breaks new ground by exploring the uncomfortable area of mental illness. Paul Merton – Out of My Head is an inspired title which promises more than it delivers: It’s understandable to want to play to your strengths, but if you’re going to explore beyond your comfort zone, you might as well go the whole mile.

Losing your mind is a prickly subject, so why not grasp the nettle?  Rather than keeping it light and frothy, a bit more dark and edgy humour wouldn’t go amiss. This show makes some valid points about the way mental illness is perceived and treated, but it needs to pack more of a punch.

Paul MertonOut of My Head. A night of sketches, music, magic and, variety. With Paul Merton, Lee Simpson, Richard Vranch and Suki Webster. Vaudeville Theatre.

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~ by A_A on October 14, 2012.

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