Eric Lampaert is a tour de force in ‘freaky funny’. His latest offering to the Edinburgh Fringe, ‘Alien of Extraordinary Ability’, is no exception, and examines Lampaert’s recent life involving immigration, marriage, meeting parents in law and mental health problems with warmth and wit.
Lampaert has the extraordinary ability to put his audience at ease immediately by, frankly, being delightfully weird. So much nervous and excited energy radiates from him that it’s infectious, with his lanky persona allowing him to get away with plenty of controversial jokes that rarely actually make the audience uncomfortable, something which can (in my opinion) really detract from a performance. Charmingly, Lampaert laughs at his own jokes! – unlike many comedians who create amusement from being very noir and self-deprecating, Lampaert is pleasantly upbeat without being obnoxious, and so is far more invigorating and memorable afterwards.
His handling of the trials and tribulations of being a twenty (nearly thirty!)-something and the conflict of interests (am I an adult? But I snore when I’m awake) is masterful, and compared to stand-up from previous years, which was fizzing with energy but perhaps more erratic, Lampaert has developed into an intensely likeable, clever and astute comedian.
This, however, does not mean that Lampaert is unable to be childish and ridiculous, with his continual (naked) references to The Silence of the Lambs (just go and see this show. It’s impossible to explain) proving absolutely hilarious and the epitome of weird comedy at this year’s Fringe. His use of film and music also adds to the performance, making the show feel very well-made.
Often a measure for how much I enjoy a show is by how much I’ve written down – the lesser, the better. It seems I spent so much time laughing during the hour that I only managed four lines. If you’re searching for an unconventional energy boost, Lampaert is your lanky, hilarious and quite frankly ridiculous man.
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