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Robin Ince's Struggle for Existence

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
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Perhaps this show could use a titular switch and be called “Robin Ince's Existential Struggle” - however that wouldn't set it noticeably far apart from any of his other shows. Self-confessedly a show designed to catch all of the comedic ideas which didn't fit into his other three Fringe shows – this show is not one for fans of linear comedy.

Cramming loads of people into the Buffs' Club TARDIS (as Ince christens the room), he shouts his way through a selection of topics – like Billy Connolly but without the Glaswegian accent or sense of closure – such as age and expectation, facial hair ticks, nostalgia, mortality, Beckett, existentialism and Dragon's Den, toilets and egalitarianism, V for Vendetta, the number of voices making up his inner monologue, Nicky Henson, Peter Singer, accidental winking, commercial radio, and arrogant holiday cottages in Suffolk. Somehow we ran out of time before addressing Kant's thoughts on reason and brutality.

Clearly not a meticulously planned show, although the audience seemed mainly to already be Ince fans and had queued up for over an hour, in reality it didn't really matter what was happening so long as it was delivered with Ince's trademark acerbic wit, seething rage and intelligent observational style (as always peppered with esoteric literary, cinematic and philosophical references).

Ince is a comedian with a devoted following, and while this show is packed with excellent material it isn't one I'd recommend as an introduction to his style.

- Jason B Standing

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