Lee & Herring Press

Lee & Herring Live Review - Manchester 14 May 1998

The location - the University MAIN debating hall, the audience - all cringingly young, almost foetal, the doormen - overkeen to get you to go to the bar first, my seat front row right in the middle.

The lights go out and "Anthony Hopkins" speaks over the PA, yes - he's wanking as he does it.

Stew and Rich enter wearing what I am sure are comedy mikes made of giant cotton buds, but it turns out  they are the real thing.

Anyway, what happens next is near two hours of comedic greatness. There are all the elements of TMWRNJ with added "adultness". This does not mean adding the odd swear word to catchphrases - "The flipping businessman in his sodding suit and tie" but instead superb, mostly animal related, stuff that was sickly brilliant.

Rich and Stew start off cracking jokes about how pathetic Manchester is because:

The biggest news was that Curly Watts had fallen over (at this stage alcoholism was denied)
It has trams and everywhere else gave up on them years ago
Bez is a hero for being a borderline subnormal E-ed up buffoon
We travel not on buses, but MAGIC buses.

Fair enough.

We then have the King of the Show where unervingly most of the entries read out came from a group right next to me on the front row. However the KotS was a man who at first claimed that his cat "liked the taste of human earwax". Rich and Stew really didn't believe his explanation that the cat had leap up whilst the KotS was cleaning his ears "like a normal man" and accused him of trying to feed his cat various body secretions. As a punishment the KoS had to eat a mix of Golden Grahams, dog biscuits and Stew's earwax.

The rest of the first half was dominated by  Histor's Eye where Stew overdid the bird refer-hen-ces to egg-cess, "the other Richard" 's songs and the Diana material which seemed to go down well without upsetting anyone. 

The second half started with another message from "Anthony Hopkins" with an enormous pause before the end when he told us... well you know.

My favourite bit of the whole show was where Rich wanted to know who was the real sick man, him for doing SOMETHING to four owls "in turn" as they were strung up in a line on trees or the business man for doing SOMETHING SIMILAR to an otter which at first was trapped but then crawled to its family. The audience was baying for "The businessman...." and Rich and Stew had a jokey go at us for just wanting the catchphrases during which Rich threw in a whispered " moon on a stick "!

I laughed so hard I had shooting pains in the back of my head. I think this was still a good thing.

Another animal bit came when Rich responded to a heckle something alone the lines of  "I want to take out you eyeballs on their optic cords and point one at your eye socket to which I'll be doing (......) whilst I point the other at your children, over whom Richard Branson will be (doing what "Anthony Hopkins" does).

After that what else could there be but a Big Daddy sketch (no, he did not get the lyric out) and a song to finish!

It was brilliant.

Source - http://www.leeandherring.cobblers.org/comrev.htm