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EDINBURGH 2011: BWW Reviews: COLM O'REGAN - DISLIKE! A FACEBOOK GUIDE TO CRISIS, Gilded Balloon, Teviot, Aug 9 2011


Clare Maddox

After the lacklustre lows of Facebook the Musical and other myriad bandwagon-jumpers, it's tempting to conclude that the site should be a Fringe no-no by now. Poking is passé, and Farmville is finished.

But, in a show that's the likeable scamp of a little brother to Dave Gorman's PowerPoint Presentation, it turns out the weak spot is the method and not the madness.

Just like those nightmares you have before that crucial work meeting, O'Regan's guide to the Irish banking crisis soon becomes more of a computer crisis.

He's midway through parsing - hilariously - a solicitor's dour assessment of his ‘comedic value' when the laptop lights go out. Luckily, only the battery dies, and he sees us through with audience banter and hastily improvised jokes.

He winds up by reading from his erotic - and disturbingly Ayn Rand-esque - novel of arrogant seduction and property development, throwing in some (deliberate) schoolboy humour at the end.

The rants about Facebook idiots and bad grammar are pretty standard, but his delivery is spot on, and there are some good jokes about Ireland's Celtic Tiger party (also attending: Polish builders, cupcakes and hummus).

He runs through some conventional gags about his school days and home village, and bemoans the influx of celebrities in West Cork, but his engaging tone and good timing keeps the audience laughing.

Despite his solicitor's damning conclusion, his comedic value is definitely more like than dislike, even with a PowerPoint fail.

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