Usually when you arrive at a comedy gig, the make-up of the audience immediately shows what you can expect. A Bill Bailey gig will be filled with politically aware over 40s, Miranda Hart’s with women and families but the audience who arrived gave nothing away as what to expect from comedian Tony Law. This mix ultimately reflects Law’s mixture and variety of material which was used to brilliant effect throughout the night.
As his name was announced, the 45 year old comedian leapt onto the stage in a skin-tight black onesie adorned with tassels and feathers, which was always on the cusp of being explained but never quite surfaced. His appearance and style of delivery is quite terrifying at first, especially with the close proximity of the audience at the venue. However, Law’s charm incredibly quickly put the audience at their ease to the extent that when he began a sentence angrily with ‘If there are any reviewers in..’ and looked straight in my direction, I felt safe in his comedic hands and his often victim free delivery.
The first half saw him rattle through so many subjects that there was bound to be something to suit.
Law established his style quickly as he meandered through stories with many digressions used to great effect which did require an audience with a good memory and a lot of concentration when he returned to an anecdote that began 20 minutes ago. A few minutes in he summed up his style perfectly:
‘Shall we go and see Tony Law tonight?’
‘I don’t know, tell us one of his jokes’
‘Well he kind of talks and we fill in the rest’
The first half saw him rattle through so many subjects that there was bound to be something to suit. One major theme however was history, as he implanted his wacky and surreal view of the world onto historic events. I would have thought this a great risk in such a small comedy club but the audience revelled in it, a credit to Law’s fantastic oratorical skills. These historic stories could not have coped with the usual digressions and distractions used elsewhere in the show, showing again credit to Law for judging the audience and their attention span.
The first half was wrapped up well with the audience eager for the second half. He bounded back onto the stage after the interval still full of the same intensive energy that had dominated the first. It did wane a little half way through the second half but was saved by a brilliant routine about his dog along with some of the best regressions from the story of the night.
Tony Law’s comedy is not well structured, nor themed, nor sensible. It breaks a few rules but ultimately, it is very funny.
One thing that I found odd was that Law seemed to review himself as he went along which was often met with laughter but as he finished his dog story (that had gone down very well) and confessed he had messed it up, the audience were left a little baffled, killing the energy in the room somewhat. He pulled it back however with a superb, if silly, piece of audience participation which insured that everyone left smiling and with a spring in their step. The comedian’s success was reflected by the fact that the majority of the audience stayed behind after the show to meet him as he returned to sign autographs and take photos.
Tony Law’s comedy is not well structured, nor themed, nor sensible. It breaks a few rules but ultimately, it is very funny. If he wants to be embraced by the mainstream he may have to sacrifice the slightly weirder parts of his act and tighten the whole set up but I will be excited to see what Law will do next.