• Stewart Lee

Stewart Lee - The March of the Mallards

Emma Ainley-Walker | 12 Mar 2007

This show could prove controversial enough to drive Lee's career further into commercial non-viability. Or it may just be a show about ducks. <br/>

Stewart Lee is not Jesus, a point he emphatically stresses. But like Jesus, Lee is a cult hero stirring up a modern day religious furore. Lee became an inadvertent comedy martyr when accused of blasphemy by funded mentalist group, Christian Voice. Lee retaliated the best way he knew how: by writing the palpably vitriolic show 90s Comedian. Blatantly trespassing beyond the boundaries of taste, the last half hour is an uncomfortable if funny celebration of freedom of speech. Having exorcised his venom, Lee wishes to relinquish his crown of thorns for a much cuddlier monikered show, The March of the Mallards.

Comedy connoisseurs shouldn't miss the chance to catch Lee on stage. With eighteen years of experience, Lee has developed a reflexive, satirical style and has a deft touch in crowd manipulation. Entire audiences have fallen into hysterics as he simply narrates their laughter, proving comedy is more than just a good punchline. Like the hoodie on a dark street corner, Lee enjoys a bit of juvenile antagonism; whether it's 'outing' William Wallace before a Scottish audience in his Stand Up Comedian DVD, or explaining the profundity of "mixing grief with violent sexual arousal." But each 'low brow' joke is underpinned by an ironic and meticulous logic delivered with pensive deliberation. From the lowest form of wit to high performance art, Lee confidently traverses the comedy stage.

In recent years the multi-talented Lee has added author, theatre director and critic to his CV, but stand-up is his natural home. As with previous shows, The March of the Mallards could prove controversial enough to drive Lee's career further into commercial non-viability. Or it may just be a show about ducks.

Stewart Lee's The March of the Mallards, 8pm, 9 March, The Stand, Glasgow, £10 (£8).