Don't know about you, but we like to be 'in the know' about the comedy shows in London that are 'so totally hot right now'. Well, using some sort of complicated algorithm the list below gives you the top 10 most popular comedy shows currently on the Time Out website. Now you'll never miss out those hot tickets that everyone's talking about – hurrah!
Eddie Izzard’s ‘Force Majeure’ isn’t your average West End comedy show. It’s not new – he first performed it in the capital in 2013. But then, it’s not exactly old either. For the last three years, he’s been touring it across 28 countries, performing it in his audience’s native tongue then adding the parts he likes as permanent features. So what we have is the ‘reloaded’ version. A sort of greatest hits. But with French bits. The first half of ‘Force Majeure’ is spellbinding. It’s not just a romp through the kind of madcap Izzard antics that see Darth Vader and God duelling over spaghetti carbonara, or Julius Caesar seeking military advice from Marc Anthony; it’s a show about a show. The high-heeled comic steps around the fourth wall to point out that the reason a Martin Luther skit is performed in German is due to it having been introduced in Berlin. Or to explain that a surreal gag where a French king meets a dolphin is due to him building a skit for a Gallic gig based around the dual use of the word ‘dauphin’. When he explains exactly how well observations on the similarity of Welsh and Pakistani accents went down with audiences for whom English isn’t a first language (not very well, ‘but I talked them through it anyway,’ he chuckles), you feel part of his gang. This isn’t your average show. It’s like a social club. It’s lovely. But then he comes back on after the interval and business seemingly lapses back into a straight-up comedy show. While the first half was all cleveRead more
This central London club at the Comedy Pub always features impressive line-ups mixing circuit stalwarts with talented rising stars. With three to five shows a week, and tickets at £10 max in advance, it's very good value indeed. Check 'dates and times' for the latest line-ups.Read more
Pioneering character comic Joseph Morpurgo's latest effort was one of the most impressive comedy shows of the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe. So much so, it bagged a Foster's Edinburgh Comedy Award nomination, and we gave it a glowing five star review. 'Soothing Sounds for Baby' is both retro and cutting edge. The set up is a faux episode of 'Desert Island Discs' (featuring dialogue from Kirsty Young painstakingly spliced together for actual episodes) and Morpurgo transforms into the characters on the sleeves of his chosen vinyls. It's a rich, multilayered comedy experience, and one that keeps whirling away in your mind long after it's finished. One of the best comedy shows of the year. Read our review from the Edinburgh FringeRead more
This review is from 'Sane New World's 2015 run. We get an explicit view of Ruby Wax’s downward dog in her new show: arms outstretched, head tucked in, arse pointing to the heavens. ‘I have to do my yoga and pilates now,’ she explains. ‘I don’t have time in my real life.’ With our phones and our appointments and our important jobs, we’re all too busy, she says. But fear not, Wax is on a one-woman mission to de-stress the world. Taking the form of a kind of lecture about how we need to chill the hell out, ‘Sane New World’ sits somewhere between stand-up comedy and theatre, and it’s a whole lot of fun. Standing alone on a stage covered in green grass and cushions, she dishes out a barrel-load of sharp one-liners. ‘I wanted to learn about the mind because I had lost mine,’ she explains. Her next show, about her dandruff problem, will be called ‘Flakes the Musical’ she says flashing a toothy smile. Onstage she’s a firecracker, constantly moving, one minute having a little lie down, the next twerking her butt off.Wax is her very own case study – she remorselessly rips the piss out of all her own insecurities while demonstrating the science behind the cognitive therapy of mindfulness. Wax is riding on the back of the fact that she’s just done an MA in the subject at Kellogg College, Oxford, and she genuinely believes that thinking a bit more about where we are and what we’re doing will help us. And because of that, the piece is never preachy, it’s a large-hearted, funny attempt toRead more
This superb Irish comic has been moaning about life's little annoyances since his early 20s and, now into his fifth decade on this earth, he's not about to stop. Ed Byrne's latest tour 'Outside, Looking In' hits the Shepherd's Bush Empire in 2016, but he's being pretty vague about what it'll contain – he just promises it'll be funny.Read more
He said he was quitting stand-up a few years back, but Frankie Boyle's obviously changed his mind. He's bringing his new show, 'Hurt Like You've Never Been Loved', to the Eventim Apollo Hammersmith in 2016. He was once known as the smirking shock-jock on 'Mock the Week'. But more recently Boyle's become increasingly honest and political, as shown in his excellent Guardian column. Not that Boyle's toned down the black humour. The Glaswegian stand-up is still as vicious as ever. But his targets have changed, and he's more heartfelt.Read more
Feelgood comic Luisa Omielan gets into the anti-Valentine's spirit, hosting this gig for all the single ladies. Well, singletons in general, really – but it's always good to get a Beyoncé reference in there, since the sassy stand-up is performing her latest comedy hour 'What Would Beyoncé Do?' followed by a DJ set from Olly Stock. Come for the comedy, stay for the party!Read more