Daphne’s Second Show: a joy to watch

Tom Slater

Tom Slater
Editor

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Daphne, ‘the UK’s most racially diverse sketch trio’, returns to the Pleasance this year with another hour of sublime silliness. Phil Wang, George Fouracres and Jason Forbes are all affable yet honed performers. Fouracres stands out, playing Willy Wonka as a plantation owner in a decidedly dark Dahl send up and Daphne from Frasier as a kind of wincing Mancunian goblin. But each work perfectly in sync, sliding with ease between sketches, fourth-wall-breaking ‘mistakes’, musical numbers and more muted, semi-serious asides.

Race is a recurring theme. Forbes is hilarious in a charity appeal for ‘chronic sass’, which, we’re told, is plaguing the black-stereotype community. Later, Wang launches into armchair generalisations about various minorities (he thinks they’re all wonderful). And the set closes with a sort-of appeal to diversity by way of a sea shanty. But this is not lame virtue-signalling, set against a backdrop of TRUMP or BREXIT. They mine race for comic material while never succumbing to moralising. A joy to watch.

★★★★★

Tom Slater is deputy editor at spiked. Follow him on Twitter: @Tom_Slater_

Daphne’s Second Show is at the Pleasance Courtyard until 28 August.

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