Edinburgh Festival Fringe comedy review: Henning Wehn: Eins, Zwei, DIY!, reviewed by The Scotsman’s Claire Smith.
If I tell you Henning Wehn spends a considerable portion of his show talking about mortgages and house prices it might put you off. But the German comic, who lives and works in the UK, has a unique take on the economy – as well as many other aspects of British life.
Although Wehn introduces each portion of his extended two-hour show with cheerful euro-pop songs and a bout of jolly clapping, his joke telling is as dry, logical and precise as German engineering.
Wehn gently satirises British manners, idiomatic language and behaviour, comparing them with the more rational approach of his countrymen.
When it comes to our attitudes to finance, the comic, who trained as an economist, contrasts our crazy debt ridden property madness with the slow and steady approach of the German middle classes.
The comic is also a fanatical football fan – he once worked as a marketing manager for an English club. He has his own take on the recent Fifa debacle, takes a few sideswipes at the standards of Scottish football and can never, ever get through an entire show without mentioning the World Cup.
Wehn cultivates a slightly sinister edge and while he admits he “Germans it right up” on stage, has avoided turning himself into a cultural cliché.
His material is both very clever and very accessible – pulling apart British attitudes and behaviour while clownishly overemphasising the deliberate, careful and calculating Germanic nature.
Comedy fans may realise this show is a honed and extended version of the one Wehn performed last year.
However, as Wehn points out, recycling makes things more efficient, and logically, there will still be a great many people who haven’t seen it. He has, of course, done the maths.
Queen’s Hall (Venue 72) until 16 August / listings
Published in The Scotsman on 12 August 2015
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