Josie Long review - SkinnyFest 2

Article by Marcie Hume | 14 Aug 2006
A five star rating is a rare one indeedilydoo, and by the definition of this magazine is meant to represent perfection for "all and sundry". Now, allow me to clarify: you will probably not like Josie Long if you are bored by life, blindly confident, or if you have not seen Rushmore more than once. If you are anyone else, however, there is something here for you. Moments that will raise your eyebrows and make you think "Hooray, comedy!" Yes, Josie Long is the heart of stand-up, and also the lungs, brains, exuberance and other human parts. Observations, the usual foundation of stand-up, are so plainly stated by Miss Long that all pretence of comedy disappears and we are left with a distilled, pure version of her world. It's like when a friend tells you about a song they love and you start to love it too because of their intricate appreciation for it. And so with Josie, the event of comedy suddenly feels like high art as she polishes the details of life until they glow.

Sometimes it seems that girls just aren't as funny as boys. It could make a girl nervous, all these headlining men and no evidence of the humour instinct in women. Josie merrily begins to fill in the gap. She isn't gritty or dirty, and the multimedia component of her show consists of talking and drawing. She doesn't try to ignore bad jokes and move on, but instead sits happily in self-awareness, laughing with you at the silly aspects of herself. And if you attempt to understand, she'll give you a sticker that says: "I tried". Because she's undeniably special (but not in that way).
Josie Long - Kindness and Exuberance, Cafe Royal Fringe Theatre, until August 27 (not 15, 22), 18:40, £6/£4.