Review: Spencer Jones – The Things We Leave Behind

Spencer Jones is the stuff of Marie Kondo’s nightmares. The Dave’s Edinburgh Comedy Award- and double-BAFTA-nominated professional nutjob appears to be a stranger to the art of decluttering. Instead of throwing his random rubbish away, the absurdist has stockpiled it for use as props in his first Fringe offering since 2017.

The premise is pretty simple: the audience are unexpected guests in his home workshop. In the most comedic yellow suit this side of Bananaman, he’s just returned from a night out and is keen to show us what he’s been working on. In a pantomime-style twist, his wife and kids are sleeping upstairs so we’ve got to keep the noise down.

That might prove to be too big an ask. He pulls off a series of ridiculously funny sight gags involving, amongst other things, glasses, googly eyes and nose puppets. There are scary props too, including a bizarre effigy of his son and a ventriloquist dummy called Ginger that’s – in my opinion – the most frightening red-haired vision since Ed Sheeran.

Spencer’s own sound bites are every bit as funny as his visuals. With the help of his Boss RC505 loop station (surely this should be renamed his loopy station?) he creates a hypnotic dance track that messes around with the question, ‘Do You Remember My Mum?’ Later, his gobbledegook gangsta rap brings both the house and one of his ceiling speakers down.

There’s a childlike sense of naivety and wonder about Spencer, and it’s contagious. The packed audience are more than happy to join him in the silly stakes, some of them even donning ‘bum hats’. This is a truly charming way to spend an hour, but it isn’t quite as well-structured or polished as previous sets.

Spencer Jones: The Things We Leave Behind – Pleasance Courtyard, 31 Jul – 25 Aug, 5.45pm

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