Milton Jones is brilliant. A genius. But that’s almost a problem – his joke-telling is so clever that after about half an hour you feel mentally exhausted.
It often takes a few seconds to think about the punchline, such is the way the man has with words.
This is great on panel shows, where Jones excels, but perhaps why he will never be able to fill an arena in the way, say, Peter Kay or John Bishop do.
His act is exclusively about clever, surreal one-liners and those often work best in short, sharp bursts.
I hope all that doesn’t sound critical because I have nothing but the utmost respect for Jones. He is a cut above 99 per cent of other comics.
His delivery is excellent and his jokes are written with scientific precision.
“I overheard a mermaid the other day. She said I like lying on the beach but my other half likes swimming”.
“I met my wife on the net. We were both rubbish trapeze artists.”
“My hero is Charles Darwin. In 1856 he wrote The Orange Spectacles. In 1857 he wrote The Origin of the Spectacles. In 1858 he wrote The Origin of the Species. That’s the one that survived.”
Or how about, “I live in a windmill. It’s nice but very small. The only problem is lots of golf balls come through the front door.” Brilliant.
I’ve no idea how many jokes he tells over the course of a show but it must run into the hundreds. It must be a nightmare trying to put together enough material and it’s perhaps why the first half here was Milton Jones’ grandad (Jones dressed as an OAP – good joke about how we was driving with John Lennon one day in Cornwall and remarked ‘imagine there’s no Devon’, and later Lennon wrote the song – long pause – Help) and support act Chris Martin, who did well after a slightly slow start.
Very high quality stuff, though, bizarrely, almost too good – my brain was aching by the time the set finished.