Reviewer: Abbie Rippon
With tales from his life told in comic high definition, Tom Allen’s current tour, Absolutely, is a nonstop laugh! Two hours of hilarious life stories mingled in with a few well aimed jibes at a handful of audience members, Allen’s high energy and high paced performance has the audience gasping for breath from start to finish
Dressed in a dapper three-piece suit and smugly styling himself as ‘better than everyone else’, Allen’s dry humour is a real success at the Lowry in Salford. His anecdotes feature characters which re-emerge throughout the show, such as Kevin, the other gay kid in Allen’s friendship group at school and thus his arch enemy. A lot of Allen’s humour plays on his sexuality; despite representing almost every stereotype ever conceived about the gay community, Allen constantly refers to how shocked he was by the fact that he ‘still had to come out’ to his parents and friends.
The story of a school trip to France and visiting a French hypermarket en-route is just one highlight of the show. Without giving too much away, it’s hilarious what can happen when ones expectation of their school taught French isn’t quite up to the standard of that of a native speaker.
Allen’s displeasure at organised fun creases up the audience as he makes commentary on everything from hen parties to school birthday parties and the beige buffets that are regular occurrences at such events. This is much more than observational comedy, it feels personal! His personal gripes are the audience’s gripes and despite his haughty demeanour, the audience love him for it.
With almost every other comedian using the Tory Government, Brexit and Trump as their source material, dredging the bottom of the barrel for a fresh perspective on old news, it is such a pleasure to laugh at something else for a change. And to laugh hard, clutching your sides, as a well-dressed man complains about BBQ Hula Hoops, that doesn’t happen enough these days!
What a great way to brighten up a dreary Monday evening in October. There really is no one else quite like Tom Allen on the comedy circuit at the moment so you really should get yourself a ticket.
Reviewed on 22 October 2018 | Image: Contributed