COMEDY / Hardy annual: Mark Wareham reviews Jeremy Hardy's West End show
Wednesday 10 November 1993
His style and content (like his wardrobe) can hardly be said to have evolved over the years. The fogey exterior conceals a concerned political mind that occasionally gives over to outbursts of rage, rendered doubly humorous by the wimpy delivery. If the angry young men of comedy are 1FM boys (loud, streetwise ego-paraders), then Hardy is the very essence of the Radio 4 man - solid, dependable, vaguely topical and prone to the odd self-conscious stab at quirkiness. Which makes it all the more disarmingly funny when he turns a touch risque. Take his material on old people. First, we get a groaner of a gag straight out of sitcomland - 'I love old people . . . Mind you, I think they should drive faster than they walk.' Then comes the unexpected . . . 'Old people, they've done everything.' And, as he graphically points out, when he says everything, he means everything.
Despite offsetting the grey cardie and slacks with a pair of DMs, bless him, Hardy still inhabits a Boy's Own world - Eve's in the Garden of Eden eating the apple and God is livid, 'cos scrumping was taken very seriously'. It's no surprise to find him talking at length about the ageing process. 'I don't think I'm getting more right-wing as I get older. I don't see why you should, though I suppose your brain cells die.' He flicks his head back and a lone hair, picked out in the lights, floats across the front row. Ageing before the audience's very eyes . . . you can't get more committed to your material than that.
Duke of York's, London WC2 (071-836 5122) Fri-Sun 10pm
TVJamie's Sugar Rush reveal's campaigning chef's new foe
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Refugee crisis: Sweden the only European country with a majority favourable towards non-EU immigration
- 2 'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan
- 3 Malnourished two-year-old found being breastfed by dog in Chile
- 4 Bob Geldof offers to take four refugee families into his home 'immediately' as he condemns humanitarian crisis as a ‘f**king disgrace'
- 5 YouTube video shows woman verbally abusing takeaway staff 'because they used green peppers'
Anne Hathaway is already being stung by Hollywood ageism, aged 32
From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series
The Lobster trailer: Colin Farrell has 45 days to find a lover or he'll be turned into an animal
Spanish town saved by botched restoration of century-old Christian 'Ecce Homo' fresco of Jesus
'Beasts of No Nation': Netflix releases trailer of first feature film, starring Idris Elba
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 250,000 back our campaign
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees