Review: Alex Horne Wordwatching
Simon ParkinWhile most stand-up comedy falls in the observational category - with notable off-shoots into the surreal, the political and the slapstick - Alex Horne falls into a more recent variation, one that you could uncharitably call nerd-comedy.Simon Parkin
Norwich Arts Centre
While most stand-up comedy falls in the observational category - with notable off-shoots into the surreal, the political and the slapstick - Alex Horne falls into a more recent variation, one that you could uncharitably call nerd-comedy.
As with other notable practitioners Dave Gorman and Danny Wallace, a basic stand-up routine isn't enough it has to be linked to a project, usually involving the internet and the wackier the better.
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Last time he was in Norwich, it was a look at birdwatching, complete with overhead power-point presentation. This time it was all about words - made up words, like 'bollo', 'pratdigger' and 'mental safari', that Alex has been on a mission to get recognised in the dictionary.
Horne is a true logophile. That is a lover of words, especially rare words, like 'logophile', that seldom make it into dictionaries. And no-one could accuse him of not trying. His quest has seen him turn up on the BBC News and Countdown mainly to use 'honk' - his word for money.
- 1 Murder investigation launched after body of man found in Norwich flat
- 2 Cyclist punched in the face during unprovoked attack turned away by GP
- 3 Calls for lines to be repainted at 'free-for-all' city roundabout
- 4 Flight bound for Norwich turns back to Aberdeen
- 5 Four more roads in Norwich to close for resurfacing work
- 6 Teenage stabbing was 'rival gang revenge’ for YouTube videos
- 7 New Norwich shisha bar one of the best and cheapest spots for Turkish food
- 8 'We promise to leave you alone': Unusual new policy for shop
- 9 Norwich man crowned Britain's Best Young Chef
- 10 Looking back at one of the city's favourite outdoor swimming pools
An affable comic you cannot help but get caught up in his enthusiasm. And staging that included Alex interacting with two other versions of himself was particularly funny.
This being the first night of his national tour, things didn't always go right and his breakneck telling of the story sometimes left little time to milk laughs, but overall this was hugely enjoyable.
He even handed out his own little one-off Norwich dictionary at the end. And you don't get that kind of detail from many comedians.