It is always a pleasure to listen to Mark Steel’s unique observations about British politics. His absurd metaphors and range of characters make his sketches both incisive and hilarious. It should come as no surprise then that his new show impresses even an audience already familiar with his work.
What makes Steel’s act so compelling is that the entire show feels sincere. No matter how absurd and funny the script becomes, it feels as if it comes from the bottom of the comedian’s heart. It is in this honesty where the brilliance of Steel’s comedy lies.
Steel opens the show by asserting that the last year has been a crazy one, mainly because of the turbulent political landscape, both in Europe and the United States. More personally though, because it is the year that saw his marriage come to an end, and the beginning of a long and emotionally taxing divorce.
In this tender, yet hilarious show, Steel identifies the issue around our never-ending preoccupation with money making us lose sight of some of the things that really matter. Through his sketch – which may feel disjointed at times – Steel explains how to handle conflict mediators, twitter trolls, and annoying unsolicited Personal Injury Claim Calls, with unlimited versatility of characters and a hilarious range of domestic and foreign accents. But even with the jumps between the story lines, the writing manages to bring it all together at the end with an uplifting realisation: Every Little Thing’s Gonna Be Alright.
This is the perfect antidote for the existential funk faced by many as a result of the current political landscape and a wonderful take on marriage, divorce and the things that really matter.
Words: Mariana Mercado
Mark Steel: Every Little Thing’s Gonna Be Alright, Assembly Hall, Aug 8-27 (not 14), 9.35pm