Harvey, Garvey and The Kane

Edinburgh Festival Fringe Scotsman review (comedy): Harvey, Garvey and The Kane at Underbelly, Bristo Square (Venue 300). Review by Kate Copstick.

Harvey, Garvey and The Kane are something of a comedic Travelling Wilburys, each in his own right having, variously, garnered comedy awards and nominations and produced, written and performed a slew of popular TV and radio shows. Stephen Harvey (of Toulson and Harvey) is already an Edinburgh favourite (or rather half an Edinburgh favourite).

This show is something of a masterclass in simple sketch comedy. No costumes, no set, no sound effects, no women. Who needs them when you have performers of this quality and writing that makes every vignette a little adventure for your laughing bits. As the lights go up every time you are looking to latch onto the funny being played out before you.

I do not think there is one predictable punchline in the entire show. To be fair, punchlines are not really the point here, but the tiny storylines in the clean and clever exposition of each sketch never quite go where you think they will. They are pretty much second-guess-proof which is a marvellous thing for comedy to be. I particularly loved the policeman who had lost a shoe, Mr Coleman with the hurty leg, Mr Blue Skies and the little family “birds and bees” talk.

The performances are pretty much perfect. There is something of the Python about them onstage, especially in the ridiculously funny sketch about Nat, the unfaithful girlfriend. It is a wonderful thing to relax in the dark for 50 minutes and be so expertly entertained.

There is silliness, here, physical fun, wordplay, brilliant character work, a bit of outright ruderie and a fair old dollop of double entendre. And all smartly enough dressed to impress your Mum. She’d love the man band finale

Until 24 August. Today 4:55pm, more info.

Originally published in The Scotsman

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