Rick Shapiro: Wild Card, The GRV, Edinburgh Festival

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The Independent Culture

As it was last year, Rick Shapiro's gig is a breath of fresh air, some randomness to balance the slickness of many other Fringe shows. The American comic is actually much more together than he has been in the past, though he maintains that rough-around-the-edges shtick.

He doesn't impress everyone: some women have previously expressed misgivings at his perceived misogyny. Tonight, the salaciousness is there in full measure. Shapiro loves women – he's just got a funny way (in both senses of the phrase) of showing it. His ideal woman could spout Nietzsche while wearing fishnet stockings. He doesn't like the word "whore"; he thinks prostitutes are goddesses for what they do, and describes the vagina as "full of rainbows and hope", comparing it to America's heartland as they are both places where "dreams are built and destroyed".

Shapiro constantly returns to this theme, his relationship with women; it leaves him with no real time to honour his prior assurance that the show "gets political". It doesn't matter: the few departures from the theme are merely punctuation marks, some of which include great, self-deprecating and highly illustrative lines such as: "Every night that punchline changes. I like the original but I can't remember it."



To 24 August, except 12 (0131-220 2987)

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