The top ten comedy shows this month

Our critic’s pick of May’s must-see comedy shows in London

There are an overwhelming number of comedy shows to choose from in London. Our advice? Buy tickets to any of the ten shows we recommend and you'll have a cracking time.


Eddie Pepitone – What Rough Beast

Critics' choice

Nicknamed 'The Bitter Buddha', this Brooklyn-born comic has been a huge hit at recent Edinburgh Fringes with his dark, angry and bitter stand-up. The US comic switches between bursts of philosophical outrage and moments of calm, introverted self-loathing and ridicules the notion of stand-ups performing scripted material. Comedy and anti-comedy put together, and it works a treat.

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Soho Theatre Tue May 12 - Sun May 24
© Ed Moore

Sara Pascoe vs History

Critics' choice

Another chance to catch Pascoe's latest (and best) solo show. Big, complex ideas examined without any sense of superiority (she often undermines her own intelligence with a daft gag) and frank, personal stories. Relentlessly funny.

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Udderbelly Fri May 1 - Sat May 2

Andrew O'Neill's History of Heavy Metal

Critics' choice

Whether you're a metalhead or not, O'Neill's hour-long history of his beloved musical genre is both fascinating and frequently funny. He riffs his way through the stories behind the music, complete with audience scream-alongs, and while some references are lost on those who don't know their Mastodons from their Motörheads, O'Neill tries hard to make the show, and metal in general, as inclusive as possible.

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The Garage 02 May 2015
© Idil Sukan Draw HQ

Beth Vyse – Get Up with Hands

Critics' choice

Madass character comic Beth Vyse plays Olive Hands, the failing presenter of ITV9's daytime talk show, in her latest solo show. But that's about the extent of the storyline – from there it's a trip into Vyse's insane, chaotic and stupidly funny mind. She's a superb comic actress, too. Allow yourself to be swept up in her weirdness and you'll have a blast.

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Soho Theatre Mon May 11 - Tue May 12

Bill Maher

Critics' choice

This New Yorker is an acclaimed satirist, stand-up and political commentator, and a huge name in his homecountry. Maher's series, 'Politically Incorrect', ran for ten years on Comedy Central and ABC, and he's been presenting 'Real Time with Bill Maher' on HBO for the last 13 years. He's a wonderfully acerbic stand-up and brutally honest. So much so, the 59-year-old comic has often hit the headlines after making some controversial comments…

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Eventim Apollo Hammersmith 23 May 2015

Pajama Men – Pterodactyl Nights

Superb American physical comedy duo the Pajama Men are back in London, with a seemingly out-of-nowhere new show. Mark Chavez and Shenoah Allen are the PJ Men, and the pair play every single role in their nonsensical adventure-story shows, seamlessly moving from one character to another. Always a treat.

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Udderbelly Wednesday May 27 2015 - Thursday May 28 2015
© Dan Burn-Forti

Max and Ivan – The Reunion

Critics' choice

Max and Ivan deservedly bagged a nomination at the 2013 Foster's Edinburgh Comedy Awards for this feelgood triumph of a show. The story centres around Brian Bollingsworth – 28-years-old, hyper-allergic and ‘struggles with cheese’ – who sees his school reunion as a chance to finally admit his true feelings to childhood sweetheart Jessica. We all knew a Brian Bollingsworth at school, and it’s these comically exaggerated yet eerily familiar characters, all played exquisitely by the duo, that drive the cheesy, ’80s-teen-movie narrative. Bloody marvellous.

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Udderbelly Sat May 9 - Sat May 16
© Kevin Frank

Angel Comedy – Improv Week

Critics' choice

For the first time ever, a few members of hugely acclaimed North American improv school Second City are heading to London, to both perform and teach. The list of SC alumni includes Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Mike Myers, Bill Murray and so many more. Basically, this is a big deal. The Second City gang are hosting workshops in London and also performing all week as part of Angel Comedy's 'Improv Week', with British improv troupes joining the Second City Players each night.

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Camden Head Mon May 11 - Sat May 16 Free

Dylan Moran – Off the Hook

Critics' choice

The misanthropic Irish comedy superstar rounds off his UK tour (his first in four years) with a four night stint in London. The ‘Black Books’ creator and ‘Shaun of the Dead’ star casually throws out strange metaphors while sloshing glasses of red wine, and there’s depth and intelligence behind his shambolic charm and curmudgeonly manner. (And, in case you’ve ever wondered, it’s ‘Moran’ as in ‘Sporran’. You’re welcome.)

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The Forum / Eventim Apollo Hammersmith Wednesday May 27 2015 - Saturday May 30 2015
© Avalon

Alex Horne – Monsieur Butterfly

Critics' choice

The ever-inventive Alex Horne received a Foster's Edinburgh Comedy Award nomination and won the Innovation gong at the 2015 Chortle Awards for this glorious show. In 'Monsieur Butterfly', Horne builds an elaborate, Rube Goldberg-style contraption on stage each night, made from bits and bobs bought at B&Q, as he talks about his current life. It's delightfully daft, and his best show is yonks.

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Soho Theatre Monday June 22 2015 - Saturday June 27 2015
See more comedy shows coming to London


Njambi M
Njambi M

After enjoying theses Brilliant acts check out my brand new comedy night in the heart of Islington at the Angelic pub on Liverpool Road N1. Brilliant headliner


Go see Bo Burnham. 'What.' is pure entertainment.

Martin Besserman
Martin Besserman

The shows above all sound very inviting ,but so are all shows that the Monkey Business Comedy club puts on every Saturday night You are warmly welcome to have look at our website . to check out all the Award winning performers we have on .

Martin Besserman
Martin Besserman

The shows above sound all inviting ,but so are all shows that the Monkey Business Comedy club are putting on in April .You are warmly welcome to have look at our website .