Milton Jones, Sheffield City Hall
THERAPISTS must be lining up to solve the riddle that is this man’s mind. Then English teachers could also use him as a prime example of what wonderfully comic twists and turns can be made with our ever-malleable language.
Wickedly clever one-liners that turn everyday phrases on their head to hilarious effect is Milton’s stock in trade, along with banal statements that take sharp lefts and rights to conjure laughs seemingly out of nowehere.
The loud-shirted comic bombards you with them before giving him and us a breather via light banter with his audience.
Milton mines his mirth from simple words such as shampoo (“it turned out to be real poo”) or names like Wolfgang Mozart to have you pondering why you never saw it coming.
From his parents hiring a “private Tudor” to aid his history studies to informing us of a big new deli in India, Jones sports an scarily agile, tangent-infested talent for refurbishing the age old comedy tradition of one-liners, employing cunning lateral thinking to make the genre 2011 relevant but more off piste than say Jimmy Carr, whose huge ticket sales he’ll soon be emulating.
With Milton’s grandad – looking surprisingly like him – opening the show alongside rising star James Acaster who aroused a drawn out debate about the merits of Weetabix (his hometown Kettering’s claim to fame) and cheese, this was a fine night for sharp, modern comedy. Now to give those ribs a rest.