Leicester Comedy Festival review: John Archer at Holy Trinity Church


Review by Gemma Ross

Magician-come-comedian-come-ukelele-bashing funnyman John Archer had the audience wrapped around his mighty fingers all evening.

You might remember Archer from the beloved Britain’s Got Talent several months ago, making it straight to the semi-finals. With enough wit to induce wine-spluttering laughter and more wife jokes than your local village pub-drunk, Archer’s routine rarely fell flat.

His performance was a contemporary twist on Tommy Cooper, letting his audience in on every trick – with a few short songs thrown into the mix.

Jokes turned into magic tricks, and magic tricks turned back into recurring inside jokes. That is, you had to be inside this venue, watching this very show, to understand them.

After a few games of ‘guess what I’m thinking’, each equally as impressive as the last, gags quickly retorted back to front-row martyr Chris, who became the victim of comedy threat for the remainder of the show.

“This is a song about crocodiles going up and down a moving staircase,” Archer explained in detail for much longer than necessary, towering over his tiny ukulele.

‘Alligator escalator!’ he sang in a brief two seconds, much to the crowd’s appreciation. A dad joke at its very finest, although one of the funniest moments of the show was not Archer’s, but the point in which his stage guest couldn’t quite remember his own name.

Finally, a word about restraint. Despite the setting, Archer only made several small quips about sin. Not a bad effort for a comedian performing under the roof of a church while his audience threw back double G&Ts.


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