Hannah Deakin reviews Mitch’s Benn: Doing It On Purpose as ot comes to Brighton Fringe 2019

Mitch Benn: Doing It On Purpose at Brighton Fringe – review

It’s very easy these days to descend into a political rant and talk about saving the world.

What isn’t so easy is to make what you want to say into a larger-than-life comedy routine, complete with brilliantly witty songs played on a guitar, that can all be condensed into just 60 minutes.

However, in what he termed his “preview for Edinburgh”, Mitch Benn saw out his second and last show at this year’s Brighton Fringe Festival while managing to do exactly that.

Fixing all the problems of today in just a single hour is no small feat, but Benn pulled it off masterfully. It’s almost as though his whole life has been building up to the moment he could stand on a stage to right the wrongs of the world and tell his audience to punch Nazis.

Benn certainly made his grievances known in full and hilarious force, tackling subjects from Brexiteers and Flat-Earthers to supporters of Donald Trump and incels (involuntarily celibate’ – don’t ask).

Most, if not all, of the categories had their own song attached, drawing the audience in with rhythmic beats, cathy melodies and fantastic lyrics.

Between the music, howls of laughter, cheers and whoops filled the air at Benn’s sharp, clever commntary. It was no wonder the Komedia Brighton ended up so packed. And this was despite the fact that the show took place on a Sunday afternoon.

In all honesty, a performance like this should always earn itself a full house, even if it takes place at midnight during the middle of the week. There will always be an audience for class acts who perforthe most up-to-date satire.

The hour felt over far too soon, but Benn left his audience with the triple lesson of not comparing everyone we disagree with to Hitler, telling us to take responsibility for our own political mistakes, and to never, ever underestimate the power of a small, angry Scottish woman when faced with a seven-foot tall Australian.

Words to live by. I know I’ll take them to heart.


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