Edinburgh Festival Fringe comedy review: Bridget Christie: A Book For Her, reviewed by The Scotsman’s Claire Smith.
It’s 11am at The Stand, now the traditional time and place for Bridget Christie’s Fringe show.
Since winning the Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award in 2013, Christie is now officially known as “feminist comedian Bridget Christie” – so her task is to work out what this means.
She begins by constructing a ludicrously grotesque definition of a feminist – taking every prejudice and assumption and blowing them up into a fantastically silly parody of what it means to believe in equal rights for women.
Thus the outdated stereotype is demolished – but Christie also makes a strong case for why it is necessary to continue to fight for equality.
She is concerned by the Tory determination to continue to punish and demonise the poor, she’s afraid of the rise of Ukip and of the glorification of everyday bigotry in the form of Jeremy Clarkson.
You could argue these are easy targets for a liberal comic, but Christie deconstructs her natural enemies with a surrealistic and original eye.
Government efforts to stop the poor from breeding are brilliantly compounded with the Tories’ approach to sexual assault. Christie lengthily, wilfully and deliberately misses the point of Nigel Farage. And Clarkson’s status as a right-wing martyr is devastatingly unravelled as a mass delusion.
There is a particularly brilliant section about Rachel Dolezal, the white American woman who braided her hair and posed as a black woman to become a civil rights activist.
Christie’s absurdist antenna was prickled by Dolezal’s claim that she had been born the wrong race in the same way transexuals identify with a different gender.
She’s not afraid of uneasy subjects and is fascinated by the reaction of predominantly white audiences to material about race.
This risk-taking curiosity feeds her continuing evolution as a comic – one with a great deal of interesting things to say.
The Stand (Venue 5) until 31 August / listings
Published in The Scotsman on 14 August 2015
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