Pepitone's Well-Weaved Set Has Us In Stitches
Londonist Rating: ★★★★★
Few comedians have taken to the stalls to heckle their own set with snide remarks about their own personal life, but Eddie Pepitone isn't your average comedian. The heavily-paunched, felt-hatted guy has the shouty Brooklyn drawl of a thousand other comics, but this particular voice comes aided and abetted by unexpected twists, unlikely manifestations. That's why, right now, Pepitone's pillorying his non-existent onstage self about his sister-in-law addressing all her emails to him "Dear Garbage..."
This bitter-edged capriciousness runs through the rest of Pepitone's set. He's an outspoken vegan and advocate of animal rights, and one flight of fancy has him become a crooner singing out his own paranoid thoughts, while clicking his fingers like Ol' Blue Eyes: "I hope no one murders my dogs." In another, he becomes the CEO of BP in an advert, holding a gun to a dolphin's head to persuade us to to buy more oil. Pepitone's a pacifist too — albeit the most splenetic we've ever come across — turning an imaginary game of The Price Is Right into a comment on waging war on Iran and Afghanistan. Such fresh takes on well-worn ground are inspired.
Pepitone's surrealism is countered with observational comedy (a piece on how, if your other half's no longer interested in looking at your slightly hurt thumb, the relationship is dead) and gracious audience banter (another surprise, considering the comedian's formidable onstage presence). The whole kit and caboodle is threaded together so deftly, that at one point Pepitone even weaves in a thread about weavers — how the Huguenots were the rock stars of their time. Here's a man who knows how to have his audience in stitches.
Eddie Pepitone: What Rough Beast is on at Soho Theatre until 24 May. Tickets £15-£20 (concessions £12.50-£17.50). Londonist saw this show on a complimentary ticket.
Last Updated 15 May 2015