Sam Simmons in A-K (Assembly George Square, 21.40)

Sam Simmons will make you uncomfortable, he will make you confused, and he will make you laugh very hard.

The alternative comedy icon, winner of the Comedy Award in 2015, comes back to Edinburgh with a very much stripped down show, much less elaborate set with much more traditional stand-up. Don’t get me wrong, given how out there Simmons was originally, his being much more traditional is still weirder than 90% of other comics, and this show is all the more glorious for that fact.

Clad in an overly revealing costume, telling the story of his daughter’s birth, his attempts to be a role model, and the origin of the male nipple, A-K (his initial idea being him reading the phonebook, inspired by a reviewer last year) doesn’t really seem to have any structure to it, but works so well in spite of that. As a reviewer, it is really hard to put into words what makes a Sam Simmons show so funny (and harder to give evidence as his fantastic ABC show Problems is nowhere to be found online), it just is. I cannot explain why an overly autotuned woman’s voice repeating punchlines to his jokes is so achingly funny, and yet I very nearly cried with laughter at it.

Really, all I can say to recommend A-K is if the absurdity described in this review hasn’t out you off then you have to experience it for yourself. You just have to throw yourself in head first and hope that you are one of the ones that just gets it, as opposed to the litany of confused friends, dragged along by a believer, scratching their heads and wondering why the rest of us are guffawing with glee the story of a man swallowing a five pence piece at a Burger King.

It is just really good.

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Scott Redmond

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