Tag Archives: Monkey Barrel

Punchline recommends 30 minute wonder shows: Krystal Evans and Amy Matthews

15 Aug

The most common format for shows at the Fringe is the hour-long spectacular. While this is great, not everyone has time to spare, especially during the week. This year however there seem to be a range of 30 minute shows showcasing some great talent which you could take in over a lunchtime.

Krystal Evans: Fishnets

First up we are recommending Krystal Evans with her show Fishnets. Krystal has a great conversational style which instantly puts you at ease as she tells you about her home, family and masturbatory habits. OK so maybe not for all ages but for the adults this one will leave you wanting more with a big smile on your face. We hope she brings a full hour back next year.

Buy tickets for Krystal Evans: Fishnets here

12.30pm | Monkey Barrel Comedy | Until 25 Aug


The Life Aquatic with Amy Matthews

I was really looking forward to this show after seeing Amy on BBC’s Comedy Underground. I like a performer who gets on stage and owns it. Amy is a comedian who is going places and her 30 minute set shows it. I loved the whimsy, the tales, the cleverness and the younger look at modern life all delivered with the wisdom and humour of someone much older.

Buy tickets for Amy Matthews: The Life Aquatic with Amy Matthews here

13.10pm | Monkey Barrel Comedy | Until 25 Aug


Both these shows are pay-what-you-want but we recommend buying tickets to guarantee your seat. See them separately or as a double bill as they are in the same venue (you’ll need to come out in between shows!)

Punchline Recommends Lou Sanders: Say Hello to Your New Step-Mummy

3 Aug

Lou SandersWords by Iain McLaren

Lou Sanders just keeps getting better and better. Her all round comedy performance and amazing material hits new highs this year with Say Hello to Your New Step-Mummy. Hot off the back of her brilliant Taskmaster triumph, Lou shares a self-reflective look at her past relationships, sex life and conversations with her “healer” who is trying to help clean Lou’s “chakras” and of course it also wouldn’t be Lou if we didn’t have bit of a chat about her labia!

Her open and inclusive style brings everyone together in a way that makes her stories come alive. Starting in her childhood and running us through to current day, she explains just why she feels maybe ready to be a mother, or possibly step-mum, to some lucky little munchkin all while making some choice “your Dad” jokes.

Lou is all set for a great Fringe so grab your tickets now and join in the fun, while she enjoys your Dad! (that one isn’t in the show). The show is pay-what-you-want however it is better to buy tickets in advance to reserve your seat as she is selling out fast.

Buy tickets for Lou Sanders: Say Hello to Your New Step-Mummy, here

3.15pm | Monkey Barrel 3 | Until 25 Aug (not 14)

See our original recommendation for Lou Sanders, here

Impertinent Questions for Susan Riddell

16 Jul

Susan Riddell

What is your favourite synonym for “bum”?

Farter. And I’ll tell you my worst one too. I was watching that drama with Robert Carlyle Looking after Jojo he’s about 12 in it. Anyway, the baddie guy called it a ‘bot bot’ and I nearly spewed.

Whose swearing makes you laugh the most?

My 3-year-old nephew Nathan. He was playing with his toy and something happened and he just went ‘fuck sake!’ I couldn’t give him into trouble for laughing.

Who should come to see your show and why?

Anyone and everyone because I am skint.

Who are you excited about seeing this year?

Rachel Jackson has just found out she’s doing a short run with her show Slutty Little Goldfish at Sneaky Pete’s. She’s my buddy and so funny in real life and in fake life. Also, Steff Todd’s show Reality Check at Just the Tonic. If you love reality TV like I do then this is the show for you.

Imagine you come off stage and find a wish come true. Which food/drink/present/person would be waiting for you?

Brinner – which is breakfast at dinner time. 2 poached eggs (soft) loads of crispy, streaky bacon, a square sausage (steak slice) a potato scone (crispy) black pudding (Stornaway) fried tomatoes and Mother’s Pride plain bread toasted with LOADS of Lurpak butter. A bottle of prosecco please. A wad of cold hard cash for the present and my dog Annie (who is a person in my book).

Describe your perfect day at the Fringe.

Take my dog out a massive walk, maybe along the water of Leith. Have lunch at Bar Soba in Hanover Street, catch an early show then head home and chill out and have the above mentioned food and drink.

How long does it take to come down after a show and how do you do it?

Pretty soon. I don’t really come up in the first place. Just now I’ll just come home, watch Love Island and go to sleep.

In the game “Would You Rather?” what’s the hardest choice you have had to make?

I’ve never played Would You Rather and never will. Making any decisions – even picking a meal deal – gives me anxiety, why would I partake in such a game?

What’s your favourite Brexit metaphor?

Right, I’ll give you my own. Brexit is like, remember at school when one of your peers asked you something you didn’t know the answer to and you pretended to know out of fear of ridicule. So for example, they asked you what a blow job was, and you’d say ‘Of course I know what a blow job is!’ (even though you didn’t). Then they’d say, ‘Well what is it then?’ And you’d be like, ‘I’m not telling you ’cause you don’t know what a blow job is and your just trying to find out from me.’ Everyone’s walking around pretending they know what a blow job is and no-one’s got a clue. Look, that needs work but you know what I mean.

Who or what helped you believe you were going to make it in comedy?

My mum. I started off writing a funny novel for a course and then my mum looked up all these competitions for me and I entered a Harper Collins one she found. I ended up coming runner up and after that I just thought I could actually do this. My mum is really funny and loves comedy. She’s always finding good shows for me to watch.

Tell us something your agent doesn’t want us to know.


Buy tickets for Susan Riddell: Duvet Day here

7.15pm | Monkey Barrel | 2-11, 13-25 Aug

Impertinent Questions for Rosco McClelland

8 Jul

Rosco McClellandWhat is your favourite synonym for “bum”?

That’s a tough one right at the top, I think bum does the job! But if I can’t just choose bum then probably second on the list would be “Farter”… but hold the F for gravitas.

Whose swearing makes you laugh the most?

Currently Tim Robinson, he makes every swearword seem intense and purposeful, if you haven’t check out I Think You Should Leave Now on Netflix, then what are you waiting for?

Who should come to see your show and why?

Almost everyone, there’s probably some stuff that people might not think I should be joking about. But it’s just the truth, and stand up is best when it’s honest.

Who are you excited about seeing this year?

All my friends! There are too many shows to start mentioning individual ones, but my favourite thing is just spotting people I know in the city and just having a quick catch up with them as we move between gigs.

Imagine you come off stage and find a wish come true. Which food/drink/present/person would be waiting for you?

Maybe I’ve had an absolutely amazing show, and I come offstage and everyone I love is there. And a big microphone wearing a hat gives me a case with a million pounds in it and says “Congratulations Rosco. You’ve completed comedy, you made everybody laugh”.

Describe your perfect day at the Fringe.

The sun is out, people are happy. You can hear the sound of buskers move through the air on the wind, I’ve done about 5 gigs and all sets were completely different but lovely. I go meet some friends in a comedians’ bar, we have some drinks and have a laugh on the walk home.

How long does it take to come down after a show and how do you do it?

I usually get home and it takes me till about 3am to settle my adrenaline, usually I stick my computer on and start making something… be it a song, or a video.

In the game “Would You Rather?” what’s the hardest choice you have had to make?

I once freaked out because I’d smoked too much weed at Wickerman Festival when me and a big group of mates were playing this game, I thought the answers I gave would alter people’s perception of me. Really it was just a combination of paranoia and being young and dumb. However I still maintain I would fuck up a horse sized duck.

What’s your favourite Brexit metaphor?

I do one joke about Brexit, it’s about how England is a Mum and Scotland is a child in a soft play just having a good time…but it’s in the show so no punchline for you I’m afraid!

Who or what helped you believe you were going to make it in comedy?

It’s a combination of things really, being trusted by the major clubs to work for them. Being accepted by my peers as an act and friend. And mostly the audiences, they ultimately decide whether you’re funny or not, and luckily the large majority have come with me on whatever I’ve tried to do.

Tell us something your agent doesn’t want us to know.

I bought all these foam bricks that people throw at me during the show, but they’re more bricky than I thought so I’m probably gonna take some sore ones during the course of the festival…. aim well people.

Buy tickets for Rosco McClelland: Magic Belly here

4.35pm | Monkey Barrel | 1-11, 13-25 Aug

Punchline’s 2018 Edinburgh Fringe Comedy Recommendations

7 Aug

Here they are! Our picks for this year’s Fringe. As usual, we advise you to see these acts live as YouTube just doesn’t do them justice.

Photograph of Alex EdelmanAlex Edelman: Just for Us

With sizzling stories ranging from Stephen Fry and Prince William to Nazis, this bright young comic sheds blazing light on current themes in Britain and the U.S.

8pm, Pleasance Courtyard

Tickets and information

Punchline Q&A



Photograph of Lazy SusanLazy Susan: Forgive Me, Mother!

An hour of comic perfection with a twist of horror that will stay with you long after the show. Who says sketch is harmless?

4.20pm, Assembly George Square

Tickets and information




Photograph of Darren HarriottDarren Harriott: Visceral

Easy going hour of top notch comedy from this incredibly assured comedian. Only in his second Fringe, he already has star quality. Get in there.

9.30pm, Pleasance Courtyard

Tickets and information




Lou Sanders: Shame Pig

An afternoon delight with material as fascinating as it is explicit. Lou has a charismatic charm that has to be experienced live.

12.30pm, Monkey Barrel

Tickets and information




Photograph of Rosie JonesRosie Jones: Fifteen Minutes

After years of comedy experience behind the scenes as a TV writer, Rosie Jones is making a killer start to her stand up career with an impressive supply of wicked one-liners.

8.30pm, Pleasance Courtyard

Tickets and information

Punchline Q&A



Photograph of Tim KeyTim Key: Wonderdate

Worshipped by many, Tim Key recently made a splendid short film, Wonderdate, for the BBC. This is the live show along the same lines.

11.15pm, Pleasance Courtyard from 16th August

Tickets and information




Photograph of Suzi RuffellSuzi Ruffell: Nocturnal

If you haven’t seen her on TV yet, you will soon. Suzi upped her game last year and this may be your last chance to see her in a smaller venue.

9.45pm, Pleasance Courtyard

Tickets and information




Photograph of Kieran HodgsonKieran Hodgson:’75

Kieran Hodgson reinvents himself yet again, this time with a new perspective on Brexit.

8.15pm, Pleasance Courtyard

Tickets and information




Photograph of Laura LexxLaura Lexx: Trying

Laura Lexx has reached a new level in life and comedy. She whetted our appetite with her fantastic Punchline Q&A and we can’t wait to see this year’s show.

5.15pm, Gilded Balloon

Tickets and information

Punchline Q&A



Photograph of Foil, Arms and HogFoil, Arms and Hog: Craicling

They have had a gazillion YouTube hits and deservedly so. High energy and polished sketches from this switched-on trio.

9pm, Underbelly

Tickets and information




Photograph of Felicity WardFelicity Ward: Busting A Nut

We’ve been banging on about her for years. If you have seen her you’ll know why; if you haven’t, get a wiggle on.

9pm, Pleasance Courtyard

Tickets and information

Punchline Q&A



Most shows are on every day until 26th August and some have a day off. Please double check details and availability with the venue.

In the Hot Seat: Spencer Jones

28 Jul

Photo of Spencer JonesThis is one of the funniest and most original acts on the Fringe. No he really is. Everyone should see this show.

Close your eyes and picture Edinburgh. What do you see?

I see cobbled streets and pizza. Tartan and seagulls. Matt Ewins sat on a wall at 2 in the morning smoking cigarettes. Bob Slayer drunk climbing up the side of a bus with an angle grinder at 4 in the morning. Me in my overpriced flat trying to make something funny involving tennis balls. Boxes of unused fliers. And hopefully a full audience laughing when I wanted them to.

What is the last thing that made you snort with laughter?

I have taught my 2 year old daughter to say ‘Independent Woman’ when I am changing her nappy. That’s always funny. And last night on the phone Charlie Baker told me a story about a piano. Proper funny.

Tell us about this year’s show?

It’s a day in the life of me in my house. Some work stuff, some family stuff, and me pottering about. I’ve called it The Audition because I am pretty shit at them most of the time. They say “write what you know”.

Do you have any Edinburgh Fringe traditions?

Every year I fail to see as many shows as I could. This year I am going to try really hard.

What is your getting ready music?

Sleaford Mods. Black Grape. Stormzy. Rage against the Machine.

If you could have any guest in your show, who would it be?

My Mum. She’s never seen me do live comedy and if she was a guest then she might catch a bit of the show from the side while she was waiting to come on. I have no idea what she would do once she was on. Make everyone very sugary tea probably.

What is the best backhanded compliment you have ever had?

‘I don’t know what the hell that was, I didn’t get it, but the audience were laughing hard so, you must be good at what you do.’

Who made you howl with laughter when you were a child?

My Grandad pinching my Nan’s arse was always funny.

What should Donald Trump know?

He should know I’m coming for him, at an angle he won’t understand and will never be able to predict.

What do you do in Edinburgh that your parents wouldn’t approve of?

My Mum might read this so I am keeping quiet. But let’s just say Crack and Bondage and Armed Robbery.

Catch Spencer Jones: The Audition at 6.20pm at Heroes @ Monkey Barrel throughout August

In the Hot Seat: Larry Dean

27 Jul

Photograph of Larry DeanWe’ve always been a big fan of Larry

Close your eyes and picture Edinburgh. What do you see?

For some reason the first thing I see is a group of distressed tourists walking down the Cowgate in the rain, clearly thinking they’re on the Royal Mile. One of them is holding a soggy map upside-down and they’re all wearing waterproof ponchos. I try to help them but they can’t understand my accent. The map says ‘Glasgow’.

What is the last thing that made you snort with laughter?

When I played a voice message from my partner assuming it would be them saying something sentimental like ‘I love you’ only to get a long rasping fart in the ear.

Tell us about this year’s show.

It’s about acceptance and my own delusion. Still a week to go until the fringe though – everything could change!

Who do you want to see this year?

Matt Price: Weedfairy and Martha Mcbrier: Balamory Doubtfire

Do you have any Edinburgh Fringe traditions?

Well I don’t drink any alcohol until the last night of the fringe. I just can’t do an hour with a hangover. So yeah I usually turn up with a few cans for my last show…

What is your getting ready music?

Anything upbeat! I really need to get myself in a good mood before I go on as I’m not so funny when I’m grumpy or angry. The crapper the music the better too. Think all the 90’s pop you’ve taken care to forget. It helps me remember that people will enjoy anything if you present it well.

If you could have any guest in your show, who would it be?

If it was someone to have in the audience, I would invite Fern Britton. Weird answer I know but she has one of the most infectious laughs.

What is the best backhanded compliment you have had?

When a friend came to see me at a gig and afterwards said ‘You did really well Larry! I couldn’t really hear what you were saying though because everyone was talking at the back’

Who made you howl with laughter when you were a child?

Jim Carrey and Robin Williams as I always loved watching the Mask and Mrs Doubtfire, I think silliness has always been the thing that makes me howl with laughter.

What should Donald Trump know?

CPR. Everyone should know CPR.

What do you do in Edinburgh that your parents wouldn´t approve of?


Catch Larry Dean: Fandan at 6.40pm at The Monkey Barrel throughout August

Punchline’s 2017 Fringe Recommendations

9 Jul Photo of Sara Pascoe

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Last year we recommended Richard Gadd and Larry Dean who went onto win the Edinburgh Comedy Award and Amused Moose Award…

This year is set to be a belter. As ever, these are our shows we already know we´ll love, and we will continue to recommend shows throughout the Fringe. We’re not doing YouTube videos this year as these acts have to be experienced live to see just how brilliant they are.

Photo of Sara PascoeSara Pascoe: LadsLadsLads

7pm @ Pleasance Courtyard

Sara Pascoe has always had major talent but since her 2016 book Animal: The Autobiography of a Female Body, she has unleashed a surge of confidence and insight as never before. She is showing a new stylistic freedom and incredible energy that make her 2017 show unmissable. Her time has come. @sarapascoe





Photo of David TrentDavid Trent: Here’s Your Future

10.35pm @ Just the Tonic at the Caves

Let David be your Virgil as he leads you through the circles of hell that exist in politics and popular culture. He´s got a great line in pumped up technology, which is put together as beautifully as his finely written material. Don´t let his stern demeanour stop you seeing the shrewd passion that drives his outstanding comedy. @mistertrent




Photo of Steen RaskopoulosSteen Raskopoulos: The Coolest Kid in Competitive Chess

8pm @ Underbelly

We´ve always loved Steen´s mix of character comedy and non-confrontational audience participation with a just a touch of aching poignancy. If you liked him on TV´s Top Coppers, you´ll be crazy about him live. He shone in Edinburgh 2016 and this year he really will be one of the coolest kids in comedy. @steenrasko




Photo of Adam RichesThe Inane Chicanery of a Certain Adam GC Riches

9.45pm @ Pleasance Dome

The pulsing heart of total immersion Fringe comedy is back in Queen Dome to exhilarate, terrify and delight us with his unique combination of great writing and blasts of improvised chaos.  The suspense and surprise make every night deliciously different so go early in case you have to go back for more. @TigcoRiches




Photo of Tiernan DouiebTiernan Douieb: Miserably Happy

2.30pm @ Waverley Bar

Tiernan has a happy temperament and sparkling intelligence but life so often has a way of putting all that to the test. His perfect comic expression of the struggle to sift the sense from the nonsense is both daring and soothing. He takes an unflinching look at the current issues that worry us all but he´s just what the doctor ordered to bring out that sneaking optimism in us all. @TiernanDouieb




Photo of Kiri Prichard-McLeanKiri Pritchard-McLean: Appropriate Adult

8.15pm @ Pleasance Courtyard

We are twitching with anticipation to see Kiri´s new show.  She is the co-host of podcast All Killa No Filla and does a great line in rip-roaring stories that men don´t usually get to hear. She tells it like it is and gets shrieks of laughter in return. @kiripritchardmc





Photo of Spencer JonesSpencer Jones: The Audition

8.20pm @ Heroes @ Monkey Barrel

If you have ever felt that adult life seems to have forgotten to include the utterly joyous laughter of childhood, then this is the show for you. Spencer takes you with him from the beginning and the comic energy just builds and builds. Carefree belly laughs from a man who says, eyes twinkling, that he can´t believe he´s allowed to do this as a job. @spendals




Photo of Bilal ZafirBilal Zafar: Biscuit

3.40pm @ Just the Tonic at the Caves

The Edinburgh Newcomer award winner from last year returns to the city of dreams with a brand new show. Destined to become a firm Fringe favourite, catch him with the early birds. @Zafarcakes





Photo of Nick HelmNick Helm: Masterworks in Progress ’17

5.20pm @ The Pleasance Courtyard

He´s back! After a couple years away, the one man mega myth returns to an intimate setting. You may have seen him on BBC´s Uncle or Channel 4´s Loaded and now you can see the man himself trying out new material. Do exactly what he says and you will have a fantastic time. A special opportunity for a thrilling evening with a comedy legend. @TheNickHelm




Photo of Sofie HaganSofie Hagen: Dead Baby Frog

2pm @ Bedlam Theatre

Sophie Hagen is going from strength to strength with an ever-growing following of Guilty Feminist podcast fans. Her searing honesty, direct approach to delicate subjects and attentiveness to her audience´s needs make her a breath of fresh air and a stellar name for the future. @SofieHagen





Photo of Dane BaptisteDane Baptiste: G.O.D. (Gold.Oil.Drugs)

9pm @ The Pleasance Courtyard

You may have seen this politically and socially astute comedian on Frankie Boyle´s New World Order with his fearless, on-point comments. Dane is going to be one of the big stars of 2017 and with a title alone that promises diamond standard comedy, we just can´t wait to hear what he has to say. @DaneBaptweets



By Rosalind and Suzy Romer

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