Rosie Jones @ Pleasance Courtyard

Rosie Jones proves herself a master of deception in her outstanding debut

Review by Cara McNamara | 03 Aug 2018
  • Rosie Jones

About halfway through Rosie Jones set she shoots right off the edge of the cliff. For a second she leaves you hanging there like Wile E Coyote, wondering what just happened. It is so abrupt and so unexpected and so bloody funny that every single person in the audience is doubled over.

She resembles a young Mary Beard in a denim mini-pinnie, which somehow helps her to beam mischief, joy and an absolute glee that is rare among stand-ups. Jones has cerebral palsy, which naturally slows her speech; we tune into Radio Rosie. But, looking back, she’s blatantly lulling us into a false sense of security before bringing out the ballistics.

There are hints of the surreal beforehand, the odd foreshadowing blip on the radar, which you might register, but are just as likely to miss. Because what Jones does, in a completely calculated way, is use the assumptions you make from what you see and hear to flip everything on its head, and for a shaky hand to pull off such sleight is genuinely masterful.

She’ll also quite happily admit she’s a prick for doing so, and has been getting what she wants for years, by whatever means necessary. Manipulative and magic – bravo Ms Jones.

Rosie Jones: Fifteen Minutes, Pleasance Courtyard (This), 1-26 Aug (not 13), 8:30pm, £6-10

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