Author Topic: James Acaster  (Read 18616 times)

notjosh

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James Acaster
« on: March 26, 2018, 05:35:53 PM »
High time he had his own thread, and the release of his first four shows as a sort of stand up mini-series on Netflix tomorrow is the perfect opportunity.

James Acaster: Repertoire

For my money the best comedian in the country right now. The perfect blend of Seinfeldian observational comedy with the surreal ingenuity of an Eddie Izzard or a Bill Bailey, but with greater structural rigour and a persona that is totally his own. I saw him do 40 minutes at Happy Mondays last month and he was utterly superb - so many great ideas, all brilliant escalated and underscored with a poignancy and bittersweet nostalgia that made it feel really special. Possibly my favourite performance of the four times I've seen him. I don't think I've been this excited by a comedian since I first saw Kitson in 2005.

Small Man Big Horse

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2018, 05:41:10 PM »
Joseph Morpurgo's my favourite comedian right now and but I am pretty fond of Acaster and do plan to check out the Netflix shows that I haven't previously seen live.

up_the_hampipe

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2018, 05:53:20 PM »
I like Acaster a lot, I just wish he’d talk about more interesting things. That’s my beef with a lot of British stand up at the moment, too much obsession with mundanity.

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2018, 07:18:04 PM »
The only time I've seen him was on some panel show, on which he came across as a bit of a truculent tosser. It put me off him, but then again, Stewart Lee was famously a bit shit on whichever one of those he appeared on, so I guess that wasn't a fair judgement.

billyandthecloneasaurus

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2018, 07:25:03 PM »
I thought Represent was brilliant, and I thought Reset was quite good. 

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2018, 07:36:42 PM »
Bit of a hackneyed " wish for infinite genies if a genie grants you wishes " reference in that trailer. Looks like a young Frank Skinner trying to impersonate Rodders dressing up as Jarvis Cocker in an OFAH Chrimbo Special from 1996. Annoying voice. Not keen.

notjosh

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2018, 08:16:24 PM »
Bit of a hackneyed " wish for infinite genies if a genie grants you wishes " reference in that trailer. Looks like a young Frank Skinner trying to impersonate Rodders dressing up as Jarvis Cocker in an OFAH Chrimbo Special from 1996. Annoying voice. Not keen.

To be fair, all stand up trailers make the stand up look utterly shit. Except that Louis CK one, but that's ruined as well now we know he was wanking throughout the whole thing.

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2018, 10:17:11 PM »
I like Acaster a lot, I just wish he’d talk about more interesting things. That’s my beef with a lot of British stand up at the moment, too much obsession with mundanity.

Who else is part of the Mundane squad?

I agree that Acaster deals in the banal but, if you look at his comic methodology, he takes that to wonderful lengths. As opposed to someone like Josh Widdecombe, who is just boring banal observation after observation with no levels or texture. 

This guy is probably the best stand-up of the new lot, Morporgo is great too but he seems 80% tech gimmick, 20% comedy chops.

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2018, 12:31:38 AM »
I liked this bit of his https://youtu.be/DZlbNOLyFtM?t=215
laughed heartily at him standing still to mime using the escalator

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2018, 10:53:24 AM »
A master of the craft. I’ve never seen anyone else do what he does as well as he does.

Don’t dismiss him based on his panel show appearances (although I always think he’s decent whenever I see them) - we’re very lucky to have a crossover comedian who can do the telly stuff as well as his absurd and intricate hour-long shows.

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2018, 12:19:02 PM »
While waiting for the Netflix stuff to 'drop' he's good on this episode of Gervais' Deadly Sirious podcast:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0ymFONxFQs

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2018, 12:42:13 PM »
I went to see him a few years ago having never heard of him, with a sceptical mind as my friend wanted to see him based on a panel show appearance (I forget which). He did a bit about the ‘who ate all the pies’ song that had me very literally crying with laughter. Not sure if that’s in any of his Netflix ones. Seen him a few times since and he’s always been good.

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2018, 04:19:06 PM »
Reminds me of Pitt the Younger off Blackadder

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2018, 06:13:46 PM »
Which is the best Netflix one to start with then?

kittens

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2018, 08:10:12 PM »
just bought tickets to see him tonight thanks to the thread hope it's good cheers

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2018, 08:19:30 PM »
Saw him on WILTY recently and thought 'who's this plank' but he ended up being entertaining enough. I could see him getting annoying after a while. Does he? Is it worth downloading the specials to watch since they're short in length?

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #16 on: March 27, 2018, 08:32:25 PM »
I'm a big fan, for those that saw the particular show I think "say your prayers" is the most I've ever got the giggles at a comedy gig.

I've nearly finished his book which is decent enough, it loses something in print compared how he tells these stories, but worth picking up. But live he is really something. Very much looking forward to these and hope it's new stuff.

My wife is in love with him. I know one of his mates so I keep thinking I should try and arrange some sort of meeting between them for ultimate awkwardness on the part of everybody.

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #17 on: March 27, 2018, 09:03:57 PM »
Sadly, Netflix seems to have buggered the audio sync of these. Very much enjoying them so far (I've watched the first two), but I'd enjoy them a lot more if the audio was in sync.

kittens

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2018, 10:42:14 PM »
it was terrific! enjoyed it a lot. couple swipes at gervais too, unless i misread those gags. good show!

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #19 on: March 28, 2018, 11:43:37 AM »
It kind of sucks when someone starts a thread about someone and then a few posts in someone goes 'yeah I don't like him' so I'm trying to get past the generic version of that post. Loads of my pals think Acaster is the best standup on the circuit right now (one of them is a comedy booker too, so they see shitloads more than I do) and it is obvious from watching 5 minutes of him that he is engaging and quite adept at i. crafting a joke and ii. performing. He seems nice enough and there's nothing about his outward appearance that puts me off. I also don't think comedians have to be ripping society a new one or telling the dark truths we all refuse to acknowledge (right now I'd prefer it people didn't), and I am fine with a 'comedy of mundanity' as outlined upthread.

So why is it whenever I watch Acaster my body just utterly refuses to give up the thinnest sliver of a laugh?

Utter Shit

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #20 on: March 28, 2018, 11:50:16 AM »
I think he's absolutely brilliant. I've seen three of the four shows (only got around to seeing him after the first one had finished touring), and they're all astonishingly good in different ways. The sheer breadth of his comedy is mad, you really never know where he's going from one moment to the next. This sounds like a wanky poster quote but he is the a truly unique comic mind, I don't feel like there's anyone doing anything remotely similar to what he does.

The Classic Scrapes book is great too, despite having heard a lot of them on the radio show. I'm unsure whether or not to bother with the audiobook, as I've already got the original radio recordings from the Josh Widdicombe show, and I can't imagine the more formal environment of a recording studio will be as good as hearing the stories told in a room with his mates.

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #21 on: March 28, 2018, 02:15:03 PM »
love him. maybe my favourite of all time. say your prayers.

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #22 on: March 28, 2018, 02:52:14 PM »
Expecting him to be a highlight of Taskmaster.

imitationleather

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #23 on: March 28, 2018, 05:44:46 PM »
Just watched the first one on Netflix. Superb.

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #24 on: March 28, 2018, 06:57:03 PM »
I'll give this a watch, not entirely convinced he's that great, but compared to Joe Lycett (good but still far too much a Julian Clary mimic) and Josh "Has anyone else ever stumbled into a career as a comic with this little talent and this much success?!" Widdicombe, two of the most comparable acts with a similar mantel of success, he's pretty funny.


Small Man Big Horse

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #25 on: March 28, 2018, 08:02:00 PM »
Josh "Has anyone else ever stumbled into a career as a comic with this little talent and this much success?!" Widdicombe

It's a riddle for the ages. And one which makes me believe some of the dark conspiracy theories I've heard about the BBC.

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #26 on: March 28, 2018, 08:16:58 PM »
I'll give this a watch, not entirely convinced he's that great, but compared to Joe Lycett (good but still far too much a Julian Clary mimic) and Josh "Has anyone else ever stumbled into a career as a comic with this little talent and this much success?!" Widdicombe, two of the most comparable acts with a similar mantel of success, he's pretty funny.

Acaster’s much closer to Harry Hill than he is to Lycett and Widdicombe.

Watched the first one last night having originally seen it at Edinburgh a few years ago. Just magnificent stuff.

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #27 on: March 28, 2018, 08:37:42 PM »
Reminds me of Stewart Lee, in his willingness to play with the form (and more specifically with the repetition and some of his stage work). Seen all four now and loved them, best new stand-up I've seen since Comedy Vehicle finished. The fourth one had a couple of routines I've seen before, on Live from the Apollo or whatever, but other than that it was all new to me.

Utter Shit

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Re: James Acaster
« Reply #28 on: March 28, 2018, 08:50:45 PM »
Widdicombe is decent. Maybe not matching the level of fame he has, but he's hardly talentless.

Re: James Acaster
« Reply #29 on: March 29, 2018, 09:48:10 AM »
I Josh "Has anyone else ever stumbled into a career as a comic with this little talent and this much success?!" Widdicombe,

he was great when he started out. i remember seeing him upstairs in a pub in picadilly circus years ago and he blew the room away. Probably got too overwhelmed with job offers to spend enough time to write and try out material properly.