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In Pursuit Of Miss Adventure
Published on Tuesday, 19 July 2011
4

4 stars

Underground Venues - Pauper's Pit
Comedy
7, 16 Jul, 7:45pm-8:45pm; 10, 17, 24 Jul, 1:45pm-2:45pm
Reviewed by Alice de Cent

Employing comedy, magic and PowerPoint, In Pursuit of Miss Adventure is a scientific search for love, as chronicled by our host, Johnny Façade. Filled with self-deprecation and statistics, this quirky mix of seminar and stand-up is a pleasing journey through the many pitfalls of romance.

Like any good PowerPoint presentation, his quest for a soul mate includes mnemonics, clip art, and some truly hilarious graphs. An off-beat and enjoyable take on two familiar subjects, the interweaving of love and statistics is both entertaining and surprising, and managed with ease the difficult task of keeping the attention of an audience very diverse in age.

He doesn’t initially seem the world’s most natural performer, but Matt Pritchard brings a disarming and endearing quality to the character of Johnny Façade. His gentle style is easy to warm to, though at times his show could benefit from moving along with a little more speed. Pritchard is, however, a master of the throwaway line, made all the funnier through his unpretentious, matter-of-fact delivery.

Speaking personally though, I wasn’t completely convinced by the integration of the stage magic into the flow of the comedy.  I would happily have exchanged a trick or two for more of the expertly delivered pseudo-statistical gags. All the same, a couple of them left me thoroughly flummoxed, and genuinely impressed.

Pritchard has developed a solid format, and an eccentric and winning persona – whose ever-hopeful search for a sweetheart is an agreeable and funny blend of quasi-scientific methodology, and idiosyncratic charm. 

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FROM OUR ARCHIVES

These are archived reviews of shows from Buxton 2011.  We keep our archives online as a courtesy to performers, and for readers who'd like to research previous years' reviews.