Good political comedy has never gone away of course, but it has had a resurgence in the UK since the Conservative government have come into power, with the likes of Chris Coltrane, Josie Long, Liam Williams and Bridget Christie all creating powerful, thoughtful Edinburgh Fringe shows in the past few years that tackled important issues head on.
Joe Wells is another young figure leading the way in this vital niche of the stand-up world, and his subject this year is painfully relevant considering recent events. For Joe’s show is called 10 Things I Hate About UKIP, and we’re sure he’ll mention the result of a certain referendum in there somewhere.
Hello. How are you today?
Look, I know you think that this is a quirky and interesting question to put in a written interview but it isn’t and you’re embarrassing both of us. Can we do the proper questions please.
Are you ready for another month of Edinburgh Fringe action?
I have paid to rent a flat which only cost 999999999999 pounds, I haven’t bought my train tickets yet so that will probably cost me another couple of thousand but the show is good and its getting better.
At this stage, how closely does your programme blurb match the content of your show?
Pretty closely, the blurb says “Joe Wells believes you should treat everyone with respect…even UKIP voters?” then a load of credits and “as seen on”s.
It’s all about how left wing people talk about a kinder society but often don’t practice what they preach. I’m the worst for it, I always assumed that because I go on the occasional protest and have read a bit of Marx that I was a good person, but I’m not, I’m an awful judgmental arsehole. For example just look at how rude I was when I answered the first question in this interview, would Tony Benn have done that? No he wouldn’t.
What are your tips for getting people to see your show?
Do the Free Fringe, it’s the best.
Who are you sharing a flat with this festival and how will you help each other survive the month?
I’m sharing a flat with my fiance and some other comics, we won’t need help to survive because its an arts festival not the fucking Somme.
Any shows you’re particularly excited about seeing?
Andrea Hubert’s debut show will be great, I really want to see Yianni’s show about The Simpsons too but it’s on at the same time as mine.
Other than the great shows, what else are you looking forward to about your trip to Edinburgh this year?
Eating battered mars bars, or as I call them ‘Coltrane’s delight’ because I once saw comedian Chris Coltrane eat 4 in one night. He doesn’t know that I call them that though so I hope that he doesn’t read this.
What’s your topping at The Baked Potato Shop on Cockburn Street?
Here’s a space to write about anything you want. Go for it.
Please come and see my show, I have worked really hard on it, the last one got really good reviews and this one is much better. It’s free and it’s on every day at T-Bar on Cowgate at 1pm.
Joe Wells: 10 Things I Hate About UKIP
6-27 August, 1pm