Monday, 23 August 2010

Dear All The Journalists At The Fringe...

So I managed last night to bump in to the (as far as I know) one journalist who has been to my show. And he tells me he was just watching my show for fun and had no intention of reviewing it. Which of course he is quite within his rights to do, and he bought me a beer and offered to ask his colleague to try to find the time to review the show. Lets hope he does - otherwise I am at serious risk of doing a full Edinburgh run of the best show I've ever written and getting no reviews at all. That is seriously depressing.

Furthermore it makes no sense. Reviewers this fringe have been vicious in calling out and criticising a lot of the boring repetitive sexism being pedalled by male acts - so why not come and see a female act who actually talks about feminism? Keith Farnam's "feminist" show has come under fire for having good intentions at heart but ultimately falling back on sexist punchlines to maintain the humour. My show doesn't do that, it doesn't need to, because it's funny about the sexists. The Scotsman has criticised burlesque at the fringe for failing to really break through conventional beauty myths and stereotyped gender roles. My show discusses all this. While being really funny. Finally the panel show The Comedy Manifesto had one review last year: five stars from Broadway Baby and one review his year: five stars from Scotsgay. Don't you think the woman who devised and wrote and hosts that might be worth reviewing herself?

People are bringing me flowers, putting £10 and £20 notes in my collection bucket and writing to the BBC to demand I be put on everything from QI to Question Time so why are journalists overlooking me? I know that begging journalists to come and see my show sets me up for bad press of the "She clearly thinks this is great because she dragged us here but..." but at this stage I do not care. Please someone come and review my show. Please please please. It runs daily 8.25pm at speakeasy@voodoorooms until (including) Friday and if that doesn't work I will gladly come round your flat and perform the whole thing in the doorway to your living room to you and the cockroaches behind your sofa...


  1. I know how you feel Kate! Seems to be a paucity of reviewers this year. It really needs to be sorted out!


  3. Hmmm yes. I hadn't seen that one. Which is odd because I've put my name and the name of the show into google in every combination I can think of hoping for a review. Sadly though Groggy Squirrel do write a lot of reviews they're not really known in the UK so it's largely useless in terms of attracting audience. And since they don't give star ratings they're not much use for posters either.

    Also although its a very positive review (so I'm not saying this out of bitterness after a bad review) it's not all that well written.

    At the end the reviewer comments "it is not for everyone as it does challenge many traditional stereotypes.". Seems to be criticising my show for not just telling a load of misogynistic racist jokes. Actually if I succeed (and I agree I do) in challenging stereotypes then surely you would hope to encourage as wide an audience as possible to attend.

    And this "Kate does her best to keep the bad stuff in the world to a minimum while keeping the audience entertained.". Not really true - there are several very serious subjects covered in my show and I'm not trying at all to keep them to a minimum. I think they're the most important parts of the show and to suggest I wisely hurry through them to get back to light fluffy funny stuff is definitely not what I aim to achieve. And I don't think it's what I do achieve either.

    But more to the point this bit, almost a third of the review:"I did find something a bit weird though, when she was talking about Northern Ireland and how the girls have to fly over to the mainland for abortions. Yes, she said mainland when referring to England. She also talked about the NI girls coming to the UK, which I though NI was already a part of. Something unconscious there coming out perhaps?"

    Right. When I refer to the (UK) mainland I mean (most of) England, Scotland and Wales. The main island of the UK. Like for instance Greece consists of many islands and a mainland. France has Corsica and also a mainland. Abortion is legal in England, Scotland and Wales, the three countries that (mostly) comprise the UK mainland, i.e. the main island. Women from Northern Ireland come over to the (UK) mainland to access abortion services. That means England, Scotland and Wales. That doesn't mean I think England is more important than anyone else or that I don't think Northern Ireland is part of the UK. It is a rather complicated situation to describe especially since many foreigners visiting my show don't fully understand how the different parts of the UK relate to each other. For that reason I choose my words very carefully to be clear (evidently not clear enough) but to not get bogged down in hours of explanation.

    And the conclusion to that: "Something unconscious there coming out perhaps?"...
    So I'm a radical left wing anti-racism, anti-homophobia, feminist campaigner whose show supports Irish women's reproductive rights and international women's asylum seeking rights but I have a secret English-supremacist agenda? Is that even likely?

    Or to put it another way - I still need a review.

  4. Just to let you know you're part of the Total Politics website review of the fringe:

    I agree there are very few specifically satire-related or political reviewers at the fringe, though. Sadly we can't get comp tickets to all the shows because many comedians don't want to be associated with political publications :(