Review: Defending The Caveman

I went to see Defending The Caveman in Glasgow last night, courtesy of a promoter who gets this whole blogging thing. It was… OK. Not great, not terrible. OK.

The show starts with a chorus of girls chanting that men are “arseholes”, and over the next 90-odd minutes John Glyde attempts to defend the male gender. We’re not arseholes; we’re just different. Men are hunters, women are gatherers, and the difficulties we have in understanding one another are simply because we’re wired differently. Cue lots of stuff about men do this, women do that.

Glyde does a good job, but he’s hamstrung by venue problems (terrible acoustics, a mic that seems to die after about ten minutes and doesn’t get resurrected until after the interval, a bunch of idiots – of both genders – chatting loudly near the bar) and script problems. The first ten to fifteen minutes are really tedious, and the central conceit – John’s been booted out by his wife because he’s an arsehole; he feels aggrieved because he’s not an arsehole, just a prisoner of his caveman programming – is pretty flimsy.

The big problem with Defending The Caveman, though, is that it’s not that funny or insightful. Compress the gags into a 3,000 word magazine article and you’d have an amusing if largely predictable bit of “Men are from Mars, women are from Venus” people-watching, but over 90 minutes the material feels stretched.

It doesn’t help that we’re dealing with familiar territory, either – it’s the territory of most stand-up, which handles this kind of material in a much funnier way. For example, when I got home I was channel-flicking and ended up watching Ardal O’Hanlon doing his thing on one of the comedy channels. When he talked about his relationship with his wife he crammed more laughs into three minutes than Caveman managed in an hour and a half.

3 thoughts on “Review: Defending The Caveman

  1. Beggi Jonsson says:

    Hi Gary
    Thanks for coming to Caveman show, I appreciate your review, yes you are absolutely right!! The venue is not good for the show and that’s way we will be having the next show downstairs from now! We had a small run through there on Friday and it was much better. Also the actor was a bit nervous as this was the first show with full venue of audients!! So he left out some of the funny bits!! Also it did not help him that the mic broke down, and some bunch of idiots chatting loudly near the bar (by the way they where asked kindly to leave the venue at the intermission) But I am very thankful you came and I appreciate your review, and hopefully you will come again when we will have the show downstairs in the better venue.

  2. Gary says:

    Hi Beggi.

    > The venue is not good for the show and that’s way we will be having the next show downstairs from now!

    Good idea. The acoustics downstairs are much better – you’d think a venue would be able to handle one man and a mic, but obviously not :)

    > by the way they where asked kindly to leave the venue at the intermission

    Armed security. You know it makes sense :)

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