'In this way I shall preserve many things that would otherwise be lost in oblivion. I shall find daily employment for myself, which will save me from indolence and help to keep off the spleen, and I shall lay up a store of entertainment for my after life.'

For James Boswell posts please follow the labels on the right.

This blog mainly contains reviews from the Edinburgh Festivals from 2008 to 2010 which I wrote for the Edinburgh Festivals Magazine. These reviews cover everything from comedy to contemporary dance; children's theatre to Handel.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Lewis Schaffer Review

Lewis Schaffer 

Two Germans, an Arab and a black guy walk into a comedy venue. A Jewish comedian, Lewis Schaffer, welcomes them and invites the Germans to the first row; they happily oblige. The comedian proceeds to fire off some insults (‘I forgive you for the Holocaust 9/11’ etc.) in a whinny New York accent. The Germans (failing to grasp the concept ‘humour’) are suitably offended, a mother scowls in moral indignation and the black guy is commended for his well endowed physique.
If this were a joke it would now make you laugh, the ending may have been funny or it may have had a punch line. It doesn’t. Instead Lewis Schaffer spends the best part of an hour spouting forth a froth of tired clichés, political ‘observations’ and comments on different cultures.
To many the idea of an opinionated New York Jew may sound like the very essence of what stand up is. Yet his jokes fizzle out in an embarrassed silence rather than roars of laughter. Schaffer, despite his cocky posturing, desperately clings to a wavering audience, pleading his insults as jokes. But hang on: jokes should make people laugh shouldn’t they?
Schaffer is thus no comedian, just a ranting, unrehearsed middle aged man, shocking (and then boring) more than anything else. His ‘routine’ is not worth an hour of anyone’s time, and certainly not ten pounds of there money. This is guff: avoid.

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