I was explaining to a friend the other day how I assess shows on the stars system, from five stars for a show that cannot, for a show of its kind, be imagined performed any better, down to one star – and a show has to be seriously rubbish to get one star. But I’ve never in three decades of reviewing wanted to give a show no star at all. Until now.
Lewis Schaffer is compared in the blurb to Joan Rivers and Jackie Mason. Well, he’s New York Jewish too, but there the resemblance ends. He doesn’t occupy the stage at all tonight, preferring to do his vaguely racist, sexist and homophobic stuff directly in the face of individual audience members, sometimes touching and stroking them, while talking about his genitals, or their genitals, or imaginary genitals. There are no noticeable attempts at actual jokes. The whole effect is like being groomed by some creepy paedophile uncle, and about as funny as a visit to the dentist. He’s fortunate that he does this in polite Bath, and no-one tells him forcibly to eff off or punches him in the face. Ugh.
John Christopher Wood