Graham Whistler: Stand Up, Fall Down
Graham Whistler has cerebral palsy.
That’s a fact that shouldn’t normally be relevant when reviewing a comedian but as it’s the central theme of his show – Stand Up, Fall Down – I’d do him a disservice by not alluding to it. The real strength of Whistler’s stand-up is its candor; for those jaded by comedians who shamelessly trot out lazy routines and tired clichés here is someone with a genuine talent and a remarkable story to tell.
The small crowd is taken through a multitude of encounters that could in many ways be heart-rending but are actually very funny. From the logistics of playing cricket in a wheelchair to the fact he can often pipe up with a cheeky comment and avoid a beating – we’re reminded it’s OK to laugh along at the experiences of someone else even if their lifestyle is different.
Although at times some of the tales are a bit rough round the edges and the final punchline not completely polished, there are a lot of positives: it’s smart, charming and well delivered. More importantly it challenges preconceptions and actually makes you think – something all too rare in comedy at the moment.