The power felt when someone hands you a score card and a pen at the start of your evening is not to be underestimated. I could see the glint in my friends eyes as we entered the back room of The Water Rats near King’s Cross for an evening of expected hilarity. With pens clutched firmly in our sweaty little palms and a tingle of importance coursing through our veins, drinks were actually put to one side to check out exactly what we needed to do and when. We’re nothing if not serious when it comes to an evening out.
So, here we were, waiting to watch the Amused Moose Laugh Off semi final 3 . Catchy title, but to be fair, it does what it says on the tin. The Laugh Off is an annual event run by (unsurprisingly) Amused Moose, to discover great new comedians. For £11 on a Saturday night, you’d be a miser to complain – seven comedians in all, plus compere and closing act, no wonder the place was sold out. Then there’s the scoring, marks out of ten for each performer, to be tallied with the comedy panel to decide the overall winner heading to the final.
As with any mixed comedy line up and particularly with unknown acts, you’re never sure what you’re going to get, but as I’d dragged everyone along, I just demanded that they laugh at everything without exception or I wouldn’t be responsible for my actions. That seemed perfectly fair to me.
As it turns out I needn’t have been so gently encouraging to my charming friends, there was laughter from all sides. Admittedly not constantly, but they did need to breathe (and have a drink) but in general, there where smiles all round and a stunning ten boldly written on one score card. The generosity! This is another point to note – a night of scoring like this, means you learn a lot about your friends and loved ones. A LOT. The rather unashamed low scoring of a certain person, towards a couple of the acts was downright shocking. You know who you are (the boyfriend) and I hope the tuts and shaking heads you received on the night has resonated. I am sure you have done nothing but think about your conduct since then.
For me, top laughs of the night came from K G tha Comedian, AJ Roberts and Tom Mayhew. Check them out if you can, in particular the winner of the evening K G, who came out with such a bang, he could easily have done a hour set on his own. He seemed like he was having a blast and every joke landed perfectly.
The evening was compered by Ian Smith (how come we haven’t seen more of him) and all I can say is, thank god I wasn’t sitting in the front row; this guy was good with audience interaction. To bring the evening to a close was David Morgan, who quite rightly pointed out that by this point we were pretty much comedy swamped, although that didn’t stop laughs heading his way.
With spirits high, a relationship in tatters, smiles on our faces and a few drinks in our stomachs, we headed back to the splendour of Kings Cross station, and our ordinary, non-judging lives. Thank you Amused Moose. Anyone up for the final?
Full line up:
Compere – Ian Smith
Closing Act – David Morgan
Hilarity courtesy of Amused Moose
At the lovely boozer The Water Rats, 328 Grays Inn Road, London, WC1X8 BZ