10 August 2009

Sarah Millican – Typical Woman

It was a sure thing that Sarah was going to win the Best Newcomer Award last year once Josh Howie was not nominated.  Since then she has blossomed into a confident and competent stand up comic, returning with a new show having performed on what ever you want to call the BBC's cheap to make stand up show.  The theme of Sarah's show is the question is she a “typical woman” or “typical man”, and why those phrases only ever apply in the pejorative sense.  Sarah's style is the quint essential but stereo-typical woman.  Her material touches on her boyfriend, being a feeble woman and her other clichéd female traits (living off chocolate, flagging self esteem, defining herself through Cosmo and talking too much).  In her post-divorce transition to stand up comic, she has undergone this interesting liberation which helps her take these traits to a new and empowering level of post-feminism.  Even analysing the difference between the sexes doesn't seem as trite as you would imagine.  She makes you chuckle and giggle throughout her set but never really hits the hard belly-laughs.  Contrast this with John Bishop who probably makes us laugh half as much for the same total amount (scientifically measured in GiggleQuants, Gq).  She is the best female stand up I've ever seen, with Australian Fiona O'Loughlin a little way behind, then (also Australian) Sarah Kendall some way off, with Zoe Lyons way back still and finally Lucy Porter providing the proof of negative side of the GiggleQuants scale – Remember of course Nina Conti is not a stand up which is why she doesn't count, not least of all because she is excellent.  Femini(ne/st), Simple and Refreshing – 8 out of 10 or four “very good” stars.