The Sketch Men, aka Jack and Zach, have all the makings of a dynamic comedy team. Their brand of surreal, self-deprecating humour is raw and whimsical, and demonstrates a combination of showmanship and wit. Covering nerd humour, politics, art and more, there is no topic these boys will shy from – but ultimately, a little refinement would do their act a world of good.
The Sketch Men are two very charming performers, with plenty of vitality and originality to offer. The moments off-script revealed glimmers of all the natural banter and chemistry you’d expect from a comedy duo – unfortunately, some of the scripted sketches fell flat in comparison to what is certainly a great deal of underlying talent. I’d have appreciated more improvised and off-piece material.
There were opportunities to carry through certain themes, the potential payoff of certain lines and clever turns of phrase – and many of these opportunities were overlooked, with the final sketch left very open and unresolved, as opposed to coming to a clever and controlled end. Perhaps this is a stylistic choice on the part of two very playful performers, but I would have enjoyed a wittier wrap up and follow through of certain very well-established jokes.
In a strange turn of events, my friend who accompanied me for the evening obliged the performers with his participation on stage in very good humour, proving that participatory humour succeeds or fails on the balance of a ‘good sport’; the Sketch Men certainly are open to risky comedy, and could do much more with this.
Although fewer sketches (more fully developed) would have benefitted the show overall, I did enjoy its eccentricity and felt myself swept up into the spirit of silliness. Though unpolished, these are two very capable comedians with a lot of energy, and most importantly of all, they are both very funny.
Review by Christina Carè Calgaro
After years of academy training, thousands of hours spent honing their craft, every ounce of hunger needed to ‘make it’ and every preparation possible, Jack and Zach are still failed actors, and so they have decided to attempt some jokes instead.
Following their sell-out preview show in April and 4 nights across 3 venues at The Greater Manchester Fringe, The Sketch Men are hitting London with their own particular brand of dry and self-deprecating humour. Expect ridiculous scenarios, ludicrous characters and 27 different costume changes for Jack (he plays all the women).
Highly energetic, sharp and incredibly silly, The Sketch Men cordially invite you to come and watch them say silly words, wear silly costumes and do silly things.
The Sketch Men: Attempted Jokes
18 July – 21 July 2016