On Saturday night, Nicole and I went to Eden Court to see Milton Jones on his live stand-up tour.
You’ve perhaps seen him on TV shows like Mock the Week, with his hair by Wurzel Gummage, shirts by Nelson Mandela, and a signature array of one-liners and puns. With a quick, off-beat mind and perfect delivery, Milton Jones’s set was a rapidfire delight, with quip after quip coming so soon after each other that you barely had time to finish laughing at or digesting the previous one.
That makes Jones’s set sound very basic, and in many ways it is, and he definitely sticks to one narrow type of comedy. But he does it so brilliantly, and I remember reading an interview with him where he said that typical comedy involves jokes lasting several minutes, whereas with one-liners you need so many more. I wish I’d attempted to count the individual jokes in fact, as I’m sure it was well into the hundreds. And delivered with impeccable timing, responding brilliantly to audience interaction, and with of course no notes and not a jot of hesitation, it was clear that Milton Jones is at the very top of his profession and what he does requires huge skill, thought and wit.
But it wasn’t just two hours of non-stop one-liners and puns (which frankly would have done me fine). The set was livened up by a few extra interesting formats, and an excellent support act in the form of James Acaster, whose gently cheeky humour will see him, I think, becoming big quite soon. Acaster’s rant about the three sides of a cheese grater that nobody ever uses was especially amusing.
If you get a chance to see Milton Jones live, do take up the opportunity. I’m very glad I did.