WHEN COMEDIAN Al Murray launched his political bid against Nigel Farage at the 2015 British general election, he declared: “It seem to me that the UK is ready for a bloke waving a pint around, offering common sense solutions.”
His policies were frankly ridiculous. On Europe: "I pledge that the UK will leave Europe by 2025 and the edge of the Solar System by 2050. Common Market sense." On immigration: “We brick up the Channel Tunnel. With British bricks. Probably have to get some Poles in to do it. Common sense." These solutions ridiculed the political ideology of UKIP and garnered widespread respect for Murray.
Unfortunately, the following year, 52 per cent of Britons voted to exit the EU, persuaded by the very arguments and ideas that Murray had so brilliant satirised. As with all and everything Brexit, it is always a case of both 'You couldn't make it up'.
Best known for his celebrated pub landlord character, admiration for Murray’s comedy has never been in short supply from audiences or peers. He has the distinction of being nominated for the Perrier award more often than any other comedian, and in 1999, won the award.
After 20 years of success, with the possible exception of Steve Coogan’s Alan Partridge, no character based comedy has become such an institution as the pub landlord. Both Murray and Coogan eviscerate male pretensions and narcissistic self-satisfaction, but Al has a keen political edge. With Brexit looming, the landlord has plenty to say about an issue that affects us all - making this an ideal moment to catch Al Murray live.
Al Murray plays the Vodafone Comedy Carnival Galway, bringing a work in progress show to the Town Hall Theatre on Wednesday October 24 at 19.45pm. He will also appear with Reginald D Hunter, Andrew Maxwell, Gina Yashere, and Tom Rhodes in the Black Box Theatre, Thursday October 25 at 7pm. For tickets see www.vodafonecomedycarnival.com