This was my first live encounter with Tim Vine after only been able to experience him crack jokes from panels or interviews.
As a fan of the one liner cheesy pun this show had gold. This is a show of two parts, though, and one part worked far better than the other.
I really enjoyed Vine’s wonderfully cheesy puns. “No groaning!” he’d mock demand of the audience after well and truly earning the sort of groan that can only be produced by a large crowd enjoying a pun.
Tim Vine has personality, energy and quite clearly a large bank of jokes. The show is augmented and enhanced through the addition of just a few props too.
The format, though, is of a chat show. I thought the chat show was off to a good start as I took my seat in the overly warm Pleasance Cabaret and was one of many who discovered pencils and little forms to fill in. If you wanted to be interviewed by Tim Vine then fill in your name, your job and a story from your life. I thought this would work because it would insure no unwilling guests.
For our encounter with Tim Vine’s chat show there was a problem. No one wanted to be interviewed and as you can imagine that put a negative slant on the gig.
For many minutes after everyone had found their seats one of Tim’s crew ran around to collect these slips of paper. Anyone could fill one in, anyone, even children. Stories didn’t even need to be funny and anything would do. Please, anyone. Fill in a form.
In the end we had five guests and I think that was the desired number but we had two fathers, their two sons and one P.E. Teacher. Three families supplying five guests.
Although these five brave volunteers did their best the chat show interaction with them didn’t produce anything as funny as Vine’s solo routines.
Frequently Vine would slap the guest on the arm and crack a joke or slap the guest on the arm, leap to his feet and crack two jokes. I was getting slightly worried he was beginning to accidentally beat guests up.
The obstacle of no one wanting to be interviewed was overcome but it came at a cost. The chat show part of the chat show didn’t meet the same heights as the rest of the show. Less punters, more puns.
It’s the luck of the draw. I can quite imagine a different crowd being well up for taking part and being able to feed Vine with dozens of jokes.