2022 year in review
And upcoming 2023 gigs plus recommendations (and maybe other stuff; I'm going to shit this one out without a lot of editing)
It might seem like it’s a fortnight too late to do a ‘year in review’ post. All the other formulaic ‘year in review’ emails you received from dead-eyed marketing drones went out on January 2nd at the latest.
But take the long view: from the perspective of someone in 2099, recovering this from a hard drive they’ve excavated from the ruins of a data centre after the collapse of civilisation, does a couple of weeks either way really matter? Exactly.
I don’t know who you are or what you want from me. People subscribe to this mailing list pretty steadily whether I try to promote it or not. Maybe you’ve known me for years and we’ve had sex, maybe you’ve known me for years and we haven’t had sex, or maybe you Googled ‘gong show’ and signed up for this by mistake. Let’s assume for the moment that you know or care about my extremely marginal stand-up comedy career. Here are the highlights of 2022 for me:
I got to the final of the Roast Battle UK Knockout Tournament.
I beat the gong at the Ding Dong Gong Show at Vauxhall Comedy Club.
I did my own show for the first time at the Faversham Fringe. I split the bill with Ed Mulvey and pretended to be a dog.
I went on a little tour doing 10 minutes at the Hot Water Comedy Club Liverpool and the Stand venues in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Newcastle. Three of those went really well. I have a video of the one that wasn’t so good.
It sounds pretty good when I summarise a whole year like that.
Here are my 2023 goals, as if you care:
Beat the gong at more gong shows, including beating Ding Dong again with a new set and beating the Blackout at Up The Creek in Greenwich.
Go back to Edinburgh for two weeks and do stand-up every day, maybe even putting on my own show.
Get at least one paid spot somewhere.
Make a fake trailer for a film called “Portal to 9/11” with needlessly high production values. I’m going to waste a thousand pounds on this just to get it out of my head.
Get back to sending out this newsletter every week.
But enough about me - what are your dreams for 2023?
Comedians only: if I wanted to put on my own Edinburgh show for two weeks, how would you recommend I do it? PBH, Laughing Horse or something else? Apart from organising accommodation and getting in the Fringe programme, what else do I need to think about?
The main purpose of this newsletter is to let you know when I’m going to be doing stand-up, in a format where you can actually click a link and buy a ticket rather than some Instagram story bullshit.
Thursday January 19th: Trigger Warning comedy gameshow, Cherry Reds BIRMINGHAM - I lied, you can’t buy a ticket for this because it’s already sold out.
Monday January 23rd: between 9 and 12 am, my GP is going to call me to review my blood pressure and cholesterol medication.
Wednesday February 1st: Wednesday Shtick, Kentish Town - I need a bringer for this and it’s a great night, so let me know if you want to come and see me and other comedians, about 70% of whom will be better than me. Tickets here but reply to this email if you want to be my bringer for free.
Friday February 3rd: Roast Battle UK at the Bill Murray in Angel, against Helen K who is hilarious and will probably destroy me. You do actually need to book tickets for this one because it’ll sell out.
Tuesday February 7th: Backyard Comedy Knockout, Bethnal Green - a competitive format so please buy tickets and come and vote for me.
Wednesday February 15th : Vaults Open Mic Night, Waterloo - 8pm at The Vaults, Launcelot Street. CANCELLED
More dates TBD.
Tulsa King is a TV show where Sylvester Stallone plays a mobster who gets out of jail after a long sentence. A lot better than it sounds and Martin Starr is in it. (Paramount + via Amazon or you can pirate it)
High On Life is that rare thing: a funny videogame that is also enjoyable to play. The jokes can be hit and miss, but at least there are jokes rather than the parade of pop culture references, memes and tired Twitter ‘joke’ formulas that passes for ‘writing’ in 95% of videogames. Someone involved was recently charged with domestic abuse; give it a shot before he’s convicted so you can enjoy it with a clear conscience. (Steam + Xbox Game Pass)
Koala Man is a great animated show with minimal alleged domestic abuser involvement. (Disney + in the UK, Hulu in the US, or just pirate it)
Dave The Diver is a wholesome videogame where you scuba dive into the mysterious Blue Hole to catch fish and then serve them in a sushi restaurant. Remember the ZX Spectrum classic Scuba Dive? No, you’re too young. Strongly recommended for all ages. (Steam, Early Access but polished and you can finish the story)
The Detectorists Christmas special was pretty good if you missed it (BBC iPlayer).