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Edinburgh Festival review – Josie Long

Saturday, August 20 2011

Long is worried that her burgeoning politicisation is making her a worse stand-up. Not so

Josie Long

Enraged by the Tory-led coalition government, Josie Long is worried that her burgeoning politicisation is making her a worse stand-up. Not so.

Despite the professional self-doubt and the concerns that she’s ill-informed, her new proclivity for soapboxing has added compelling focus to the countless things she feels passionately about.

So while this could never be mistaken for the tightest set on the Fringe, The Future Is Another Place follows through on her previous show’s closing diatribe, affording her a broader repertoire of enthuses, rants and girlish whines – the latter a recurring, almost insufferable parody of her reputation for childlike whimsy.

Deriding this “1980s tribute government” and reasoning that she can’t stay disengaged while their policies are destroying so many things she loves, Long is throwing herself into the resistance, mounting a stout defence of the UK Uncut movement. She manages to make taxation amusing and forcibly instructs right-wingers that for reducing art to its economic value, they can now only enjoy creativity of the crassest, most mainstream variety.

Occasionally distracted, she’d rather perform a self-penned playlet in which the Brontë sisters abuse their brother Branwell, and her newfound zeal to enact change is at least partially inspired by a recent near-death experience.

Nevertheless, she’s sufficiently engaged to take on the Liberal Democrats in a televised debate and to correspond with an incarcerated Black Panther, taking hope from the notion of a New Left that she intends to be at the vanguard of.

4 stars

Review written by Jay Richardson
Pic by Idil Sukan


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