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If there’s one thing more frustrating than predictable punchlines, it’s no punchlines at all. Likable sketch trio Giraffe rely on the very idea of their skits being funny, rather than the script itself, and most of the scenarios are rather weak.
Ali James, George Kemp and John Oakes – who all look like they’ve come fresh from the set of CBBC – certainly pack a lot in to their 50-minutes. Most sketches only last 30 seconds or so, and the show rollicks along at a rapid pace. Their performances are solid, too, if a little hammed up, and they have a knack for impressions: Pierce Brosnan, Mary Poppins and Richard O’Brien all feature and are well mimicked.
But the material itself is unimaginative and trite. Ringo Starr confuses the lyrics to ‘Let It Be’, Harry Potter attempts to cast a spell on his penis, and you can probably guess what happens when Captain Kirk beckons a crewmember to ‘come’. It’s pretty standard stuff, and doesn’t stand out among the hoards of studenty sketch shows the Fringe attracts.
Still, they’re a new troupe, and likable enough. Perhaps next year they’ll put thought into writing the jokes and making their scenes end with a bang.
See 'Giraffe – Sketchy Comedy' at the Edinburgh Fringe