Eleanor Morton: Angry Young Woman (Stand 4, 12.05)

Eleanor Morton admits early on in this hour that she isn’t as angry as the title of the show may imply, however what she lacks in ire she makes up for by being really very funny.

Morton, a rare local in August’s Edinburgh, has been a staple of alternative stand-up on the Scottish and London circuits for a few years now, but here steps away from the ukulele towards more straight stand-up.

Situated in an impossibly sweaty but pleasingly intimate room as part of the Stand’s festival line-up, this is well-thought out, and always impressively funny piece on feminism.  With stand-out moments including a wonderful sketch on Marilyn Munroe intentionally screwing up repeated takes on a film set, this hits the sweet spot in the Venn diagram between surrealism and satire, meaning it never gets too far away from the point it’s making, whilst also never feeling more like a political rally than a stand-up show.

There are some quiet moments, possibly due to the stiflingly hot nature of the room having a draining effect on the audience as much as anything else, such as a section where she improvises films as if women were their main characters. In these improvisations when they hit the mark they are incredible, however a number just seemed to peter out without a punchline, or felt somewhat samey after a while (admittedly, this is as much an issue with the nature of Hollywood blockbusters than anything else). However, the written material is all more than strong enough to make up for any weaker moments of crowd work, and there is a very clever device used at the very end, that work together to make this a very satisfying hour from a comic who should be a fixture on your screens sooner rather than later.

This is a show certainly worth fighting against the heat for.


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Scott Redmond

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