Doug Stanhope - Comic shocks and delights

REVIEW: Doug Stanhope at The Engine Shed, Lincoln, Tuesday 17th April

By The Newsroom
Monday, 30th April 2012, 5:30 pm

YOU may remember Doug Stanhope from his guest spots on Charlie Brooker’s Newswipe and Screenwipe on the BBC.

His appearances were brief but brilliant tirades against the morons of the world, punctuated by his catchphrase ‘I’m Doug Stanhope, and that’s why I drink’. Tonight’s show is an enthralling exploration of his on-screen character - with more tales of morons and more reasons for him to turn to alcohol.

Very little of what Stanhope actually said can be printed in the pages of this family-friendly community newspaper, but I can certainly vouch for the undeniable wit and talent of one of the most interesting and fiery comics on the circuit today.

He often finds himself compared to Bill Hicks - and it’s easy to see why, but in his defence, Stanhope has an inimitable voice and style of his own - striking an impressive balance between being articulate and well-informed, and being crude to the point of sheer disgust. Once described by Ricky Gervais as ‘maybe the most important stand-up working today’, Stanhope pulls off a brilliantly acerbic and refreshingly cliche-free set of razor-sharp comedy.

The highlight is the insight into his recent high-profile Twitter battle with The Daily Telegraph’s Allison Pearson regarding her views on having ‘the right to die’ - ironically being as close to-the-knuckle as possible to reveal her as the offensive one. The show quickly turns into a rally as the audience are soon on their feet, lapping up every moment of Stanhope’s fury. This one is not for the faint-hearted.

If Michael Mcintyre is a fruity cocktail, then Doug Stanhope is a Molotov cocktail.

By Andrew Trendell