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RICHARD TODD: MONSTERS

Comedy

Venue:The Counting House, 38 West Nicolson Street Edinburgh EH8 9DD
Phone: 0131 667 7533
Links: Click Here for venue details, Click here for map
Ticket Prices: Free  
Room: The Lounge
AUG 3-13, 15-27 at 13:00 (60 min)
 
Show Image

Like a piece of old sellotape stuck on a wall, neurotic flibbertigibbet Richard Todd clings to nothing but his place on the earth; may his grip hold for an hour of art therapy, inner demons and salad.

'A brilliant observational comic as well as an engaging story teller and marries the two into something wonderfully funny.' – The Scotsman.

'A talent entirely of his own.' – Fest ****

'Flashes of brilliance with complex, imaginative surrealism and an endearingly chaotic style.' – The Skinny

'An inventive comic thinker' – Chortle

'A smart surrealist.’ – Independent


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News and Reviews for this Show

August 27, 2017  Chortle
3.5*
Three things immediately recommend Richard Todd to you – the charming, self-deprecating manner in which he gently cajoles punters into his free show, the amusing, pre-investment bucket speech he offers, and the fact that he promises to finish after a clipped 40 minutes, a pledge he makes good on.

With his warm, unthreatening Durham accent he's got something of the children's television presenter about him. Equally though, with his lanky frame, wild hair and intense stare, you're not entirely surprised to hear about his mental health issues.

Quoting Dostoevsky on humanity's need for a purposeful existence, he's struggled to find such a thing in order to keep his inner demons at bay, with specific bogeymen repeatedly alluded to.

Establishing himself with relatable tales about his anxiousness waiting to open train doors with a line of commuters behind him and the rites-of-passage Fringe experience of performing in an obscure venue to just two people, he nevertheless quickly segues into an account of his raging adolescent libido and the inappropriate times it would reveal itself. This is followed by an image of his even younger self violently attacking the fridge when it refused to release an ice lolly to him.

The lyrical turns of phrase Todd employs describing the latter tale, in particular, and the manic manner in which he recounts these episodes are arresting, which is important. Because after he's established that he's got a counsellor who helps him comprehends his thoughts, he returns to them to reveal a fuller picture, at once pullback-and-reveals and a deepening of the understanding of his underlying issues.

He reveals that he works as an art tutor with the homeless and those with drug problems, and there's storytelling sleight of hand as he blurs the distinctions between competent teacher and vulnerable pupils for some hilarious lines and a routine in which he, ironically, only manages to mask his charges' crazed creations with some unhinged behaviour of his own.

The lack of an ultimate, stable authority in any of this is testified to by the side-effects of his antidepressants and the fact that his counsellor took him on as a retirement hobby after seeing him at a gig.

Domestic rituals of bathing and cleaning give him a semblance of order and help to suppress his inner monsters, but Todd can't prevent himself from developing an unhealthily close bond to his Henry Hoover and fixation with his neighbour's excessively loud blaring of the Bee Gees through the walls.

He recalls how he came to be prescribed his anti-depressants, after a confrontation with a gang of teenage thugs that failed to release his demons in the Incredible Hulk-like manner he'd anticipated, even as his thoughts ultimately take a turn towards the increasingly deranged …

Tackling a difficult and highly personal subject with honesty, good humour and playfulness, imbuing even the most psychotic aspects with humane empathy, Todd can't always keep the chaos in his tale from bleeding into his presentation of it, which jumps around a little too much chronologically. But he's a hugely likeable presence at the mic and you get as swept up by his account as he does telling it. Click Here

August 24, 2017  Edinburgh Festivals Magazine
In Monsters, Richard Todd might start off a little shaky, but as the show goes on he undoubtedly finds his groove. His awkwardness adds a certain lovability to his performance and gives off a sense of genuineness which helps the audience connect.

Monsters is an interesting and entertaining take on mental health and the inner demons inside Todd’s head. His neurotic nature occasionally makes things seem a little chaotic, but this all adds to his style. His material is original, and delivered with exceptional comic timing. Using his pain as his inspiration, Todd’s show might not be exactly happy-go-lucky, but it is definitely painfully funny. His references to his stunted social skills growing up add a relatable element, while some excellent gags involving a Henry Hoover and a delinquent bottom mark out a few of the highlights of the hour. Plus, his skit about the various hobbies he employed to rid him off his Monsters will leave you nothing short of a pain in your side.

Richard Todd is definitely an up and coming talent that deserves a larger audience. Click Here

August 8, 2017  The Scotsman
Some comics have a gift of words that touches their work with wonder. Richard Todd is such a comic.

Richard has monsters in his head. He is on antidepressants now so they are, he tells us, pretty much locked up in secure rooms in his mind. Although he can sometimes still hear them shouting. This is, you might have gathered, not a happy show. It is a painfully funny show. Luckily for you, the audience, Richard gets the pain and you get the funny. This is a man who hears the individual hands of his five-strong first day audience clapping at the top of the show and likens the sound to that of the bodies of two embittered lovers coming together in an attempt at an ultimately loveless orgasm. How can you fail to warm to a comic whose mind works like that ? He describes his younger self as a “feeble” child and a “whelp”. He talks of happiness as “a box of kazoos and a frisky gerbil”. These examples might seem small things, but in a world of dull comics droning, Richard Todd is like finding The Fall guesting on X-Factor. His hour is a torrent of personal disaster from a childhood freezer stabbing and a haircut related gang attack. through his whispering, deliquent bottom, his obsession with Henry the Hoover and the best way to run a bath, to his overbite. Richard and his monsters make for a powerful hour of tragi-comedy. Take your own monsters along. They will love it. Click Here

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