"A Rottweiler wrapped in tin foil..."

Well what a way to start the year! I've got to say we were worried. At eight 'o' clock it was like Anne Widdecombe's womb. But that's where the similarity ends because loads of people 'came' in to the inviting entrance to XS Malarkey.

Jason Cooke First act of the year couldn't make it due to the release of his new George Harrison book, so Malarkey regular, Jason "Entertainment" Cooke stepped into the breach.

Jason had plenty of new material to entertain tribe Malarkey and a large selection of new "animal porn". The animal porn material always goes down a storm at the club and Jason's collection just gets better and better.

I've seen Jason a lot, and I mean a lot, but that was the best I've ever seen him. Jason has a natural, if haphazard, style that is very endearing. His confidence and delivery is bang on and the material just keeps flowing.

Keep it up Jason!

The second act of 2002 was a brand spanking new open spot going by the name of Paul Hamer. Although Toby introduced him as someone else. Oops!

Paul Hamer Paul's set hinged largely around his speech impediment. The lisp provided plenty of amusing material. Paul also encouraged the audience to heckle with his pre-fabricated lines. Al Pacino style for the lads, soft touch for the girls.

Paul had a very successful debut at the Malarkey. Good, confident, affable style. And a nice bloke too.

Just before the break we were treated to some moral enlightenment from "Little Jimmy Christian" (AKA Jason Cooke). Jimmy used to be a smack head and generally bad lad, but he's now found god, and, unfortunately, wants to introduce us!

Jason's latest comedy creation certainly has potential. I think the idea is a good one but a little more work is needed. Nice to get a snippet of the work in progress though. I'm sure Little Jimmy will be another classic character in the Cooke repertoire.

After the break, we were treated to your webmaster's favorite comedian, the mighty, Anthony J. Brown.

Anthony J Brown Anthony reckons Leeds United play in white as a nod to the Klu Klux Klan. Makes sense. He was recently disqualified from Robot Wars with his entry The Thunderbeast, as it contravened the rules by being a Rottweiler wrapped in Bacofoil!

At this point, I'm gonna hand you over to your webmaster for a few comments.


I've seen Anthony perform on many occasions and he's the only comedian I know who gets funnier even though you've seen some material before. Great to see him have some new stuff, though. Check out some of his audio clips in the Downloads section.

I was actually crying with laughter that night - in fact, I did one of those embarrassing things where you sort of snort whilst laughing without your brain giving your nose permission to do it. It was that good!

Cheers for that fella.

Anthony's style was the extreme of deadpan humour. He completely mesmerized the audience into silence followed by massive bouts of laughter and then he hypnotized them again setting up the next gag. You just couldn't keep your eyes off him.

An engaging performance from a master of comedy. One of the best.

In the interval, I managed to monopolise a full bowl of chips, which was nice. Especially since I hadn't had any tea.

The first headliner of 2002 was Dave Williams. Dave traveled all the way from sunny Didsbury to be with us at the Malarkey. Apparently the hecklers from Didsbury are so posh they heckle by fax or by a solicitor's letter.

Dave Williams Dave reckons the terrorist attacks are slowly scaling down from the twin towers. The other day it was a light plane into an empty skyscraper. What's next? A BMX into Argos?

Dave managed to induce both applause and nausea with the same joke, and I loved the "meanwhile, back at the gag" line.

Mr Williams is obviously an experienced comic with a good reliable performance. Nothing groundbreaking, but a sure-fire winner. He had a great connection with the audience, perhaps a little too much when he starts molesting the ladies (and the lads) and nicking the Aussie lass's scarf!

So we managed to get 2002 off to a kicking start. Start as you mean to go on an' all that!

See you next week.