Live Review: David McSavage

david mcsavage index28th November 2021, Top Secret Comedy Club, Covent Garden, London.

I didn’t know anything about David McSavage before today other than that he’d appeared in a sketch show several years ago that had been highly praised by a vague acquaintance, but I wish I’d researched him more than I did as then I might have discovered how lazy, trite and tedious a comedian he is, performing today an hour of hacky material that felt like I’d fallen through a time warp to thirty years ago.

At one point he jokes about comedians who seem haphazard and unprepared but every single line is carefully scripted, and how he’s the opposite of that, and boy can you tell but it’s not something he should be boasting about. He clearly relies on the odd bit of scripted material of course, though it’s always banal nonsense, one bit about priests supposedly being celibate and young boys being the sort of tired joke that wasn’t funny decades ago.

Strumming a guitar every so often and singing the odd line for no real reason, he claims a lot of what he says is ironic, but even if that is the case these he trades in such poorly thought out generalisations that very little of it is funny. A bit early on sees him say that everyone in Ireland wants to be liked but that’s not an issue the English have, before he attempts an oddly weak impression of someone from London, and then the segment trails off without any real ending, something which applies to pretty much every subject he touches upon. That’s most glaringly the case when he discusses the idea that in compares ISIS to the IRA, it’s an idea that Stewart Lee has performed material about but the difference here is that McSavage’s material never goes anywhere, so as well as being unoriginal it’s unfunny.

He briefly talks about his alcoholism and how when he attended an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting he was bored to death by a woman there, mimicking the way she spoke and when it gets no react even McSavage realises that it’s vapid stuff and that’s he boring the audience, some of whom can audibly be heard talking, but his attempts at self-deprecation fail to save the segment. Some jokes about anal sex, blow jobs and how he doesn’t want to have sex with fifty five year old women are as depressingly dreary as most of his other material, though to be fair many did laugh at these parts, so it seems there’s still an audience for ugly broad material.

Towards the end he rambles on about how he did a gig at Angel Comedy and made someone cry by calling them a ponce, and at this point I felt the urge to walk out, and it was only his commenting that we were near the end of the gig that I stayed seated. Yet again as with most of the subjects he talks about there doesn’t seem to be a point to the story, it doesn’t go anywhere, and then he ends by briefly mentioning his ex being an anti-vaxxer and how he just doesn’t care about Covid, mentions that a comedian should always end on a big laugh, but then does the opposite.

One of the worst hour’s of comedy I’ve ever witnessed, nearly everything this man has to say has been said a ridiculous amount of times before, and whenever he tried to interact with an audience member they often got far bigger laughs than he did. There wasn’t a hint of originality in his set, and all of the subjects are things that you’d expect a comedian only just starting out to possibly talk about, not someone who’s been in the industry as long as he has. Appallingly bad.

Alex Finch.

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