Mitch Benn’s strength has always been his ability to skewer the pompous with witty, punchy lyrics. This year he is doing that and aiming to understand what comedy is for and where he fits into it.
That is ‘The Point’ during which he tackles everything from the history of comedy — in a three minute rap — to an explanation of how Britain’s ability to laugh at itself has helped it through the bad times and kept the extremists at bay.
Benn is remembered by most as the ‘comic song guy’ on Radio 4’s ‘The Now Show’. It surprises me to learn that he left that gig way back in 2016. His presence at the Edinburgh Fringe goes back much further, however, and I’m happy to report that Mitch Benn is back to doing what he does best — highlighting the idiocies of the ‘people at the top’ whilst creating an entertaining hour of satire, wit and thought-provoking songs.
A combination of original music and clever pastiches of rock / pop classics allow him to put across his point with plenty of variety. ‘Sexual Healing’ and The Steve Miller Band’s ‘The Joker’ both get the Mitch Benn treatment whilst the use of a loop station allows him to create his own music with verbal and guitar-based beats and rhythms. His songs emerge seamlessly from the conversation and he drops back into his story just as easily.
This show made me laugh and it made me think.
I think that’s the point. Job done.
Mitch Benn: The Point
Underbelly, Bristo Square (Jersey)
August 8-13, 15-28, 4pm