The Cambridge Geek

Sophie Willan's Guide to Normality

Back to more autobiographical stand-up. Here it's Sophie Willan, a comedian from Bolton. (The greater precision beyond simple "gritty northern comedy" matters here, mostly because I'm originally a mancunian.)

Whereas most childhood tales usually sit in the "misery porn" genre, Willan sits in the misery comedy field. Her jokes and anecdotes are generally themed to a given episode, with childhood, monogamy and work being the previous topics.

It's very much on the cynical end of the spectrum, but that doesn't stop it being funny. The comedy revolves rather well about the horrors of Willan's life, including the concept of promiscuity being rephrased as anthropology, and the cost of marriage and divorce measured in kilobottles of gin. Also the value of manic depression as an entertaining personality quirk.

Each fifteen minute episode is finished with a clickbait style list, along the lines of "the top ten worst couples". These provide some of the most consistent laughs, and do a very nice job of finishing them off.

For such short pieces, they pack a lot in, and don't cost you much time. Give it a try.

Score 3

Tagged: Radio Comedy Monologue Stand-up Autobiographical