Side-burned fruit loop...

Ben and Mark First up on Tuesday was the unique double act, Ben and Mark. Unique in that they have their set pre-recorded and played over the PA as though the audience could hear their thoughts aloud whilst they played Travel Connect Four.

An interesting idea with some good moments but to me it came across as a little lazy. Maybe one for the goggle box and not the stage. Having said that, they’ve not been doing it long so time will tell how it develops.

An interesting way to get off the stage though. They snogged!

Jarred Christmas Jarred Christmas was next on the Malarkey milk crate. The side-burned loon from New Zealand delivered some quality material in an animated, energetic delivery reminiscent of Billy Connolly at times.

Jarred was clearly enjoying himself on stage, which transferred well to the enjoyment factor for the audience. Manic, angry in places sometimes losing it with his own laughter. Absolute class.

A headliner for the future.

After the break, the sketch troupe Bumblepuppy made their first appearance at Bar XS.

With their Blue Peter style costumes and surreal kids TV style delivery, Bumblepuppy performed some off the wall sketches and songs.


Some of the sketches were fantastic, some not so good. The Pirate Hat sketch for instance lacked any momentum and is the first sketch to drop in my opinion. Also the sexual innuendo wordplay got a little old too quickly. There is limited mileage to the same gag.

I think the set would be far more effective with a bit of pruning. Shorten some sketches, drop others and try to maintain more momentum.

Neville Raven Neville Raven had done a Gary Neville in that he had also broke his foot. Not that he was a dull footballer playing for the Rags. Neville performed on Tuesday on his crutches and gave by no means a crippled performance.

His material ranged from retail advice to body piercing and student slum tales. His lively delivery seemed to draw the crowd into his tall tales nicely

I personally found the stage persona less than embracing but I was in the minority. The crowd seemed to be lapping it up. And the fact that he got an encore proves I was in the minority. And the speech impediment gag was a superb finish. Class.

Comic of the night has to go to Jarred Christmas. Just superb.

See you next week.