Maff Brown may not be a household name but chances are, if you are a comedy fan, that you have heard some of his stuff on TV as he has written for Mock the Week and for Vic and Bob’s Shooting Stars. He also runs the Outside the Box Comedy Club in London which has featured pretty much every comic on the circuit and also tours regularly with his own stand up show
The night we went to see him is often referred to by Fringe performers as Black Wednesday, the first Wednesday of the month traditionally being a slow one for ticket sales and more subdued audiences. No such problem for Brown, however, with his scruffy appearance and self-deprecating style soon winning over the punters. He rattles off the jokes like a machine gun, and like machine gun fire, some of the bullets don’t find the target but what the heck, there are plenty more of them where that came from. There was something for everyone but the majority of jokes seem targeted to a young male audience and at times were a bit close to the bone. He did warn us whenever he was going to go into the “dark side” so I suppose the more sensitive souls could always put their fingers in their ears at those points.
To sustain such a prolific gag rate would be very difficult for any comic – and indeed for the audience – so it is with some relief that Brown introduces some very funny slides to punctuate the flow of jokes. He also informed us that the cost of putting on a show at the Fringe is a staggering £18,000 and, having brought a show to Edinburgh for the last ten years, he has spent a total of £180,000. A labour of love then, but he obviously thinks it is worth it and hopefully we made his Black Wednesday a little lighter this year.