Monday 15 April 2024
 6.4°C   S Moderate Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Reviews / Quality patter in the best Glesga style

Kevin Bridges: "...eye-wateringly brilliant"

Heading into Clickimin on Thursday night, the first thing to catch the eye of ticket-holders was a prominently placed notice: “No sustained or abusive heckling”, writes Alex Garrick-Wright.

The implication being that there is some kind of line in the sand; heckling is fine, but once it is sustained beyond a certain point, or becomes too abusive, then it won’t be tolerated?

Fair enough; Kevin Bridges has played rougher venues than Lerwick before, and if anyone is going to know the line between abusive disruption and good-natured banter, it’ll be him.

Walking into the venue, it seemed a little bit up-front. In retrospect, it was there for good reason.

The surprise (read: ‘not advertised on the promotional material’) opening act was Dougie Dunlop, a Scottish comedian who managed to avoid the standard clichés most comedians make on their first trip to the isles (refreshingly, no jokes about the lack of trees or the ponies to be had here).

A very talented comic, Dougie warmed the audience to a nice simmer, doing his best to engage and get the ball rolling.

In such a large venue, the crowd were not quite as forthcoming as they would be in a smaller comedy club, and apart from satisfyingly turning the tables on a heckler, he did not get much by way of interaction.

Dougie was a great addition to the bill, although it was a shame that his appearance had not been given much fanfare or hype.

People do tend to forget any name that wasn’t printed on the ticket, so lest he gets overlooked, here it is again: Dougie Dunlop. He was great. Keep an eye out for him.

After a brief interval (and stampede to the bar) it was time for the Big Man himself.

Returning to ‘the most prestigious of gym halls’, Kevin had the crowd bent-double with laughter in the first couple of minutes.

Become a supporter of Shetland News


Clydebank’s most famous son (apart from the one Scottish guy in Game of Thrones and Wet Wet Wet), Kevin’s comedy can only be described as ‘quality patter’, in the best Glesga style.

Incredibly natural on stage, Kevin was clearly having as much fun as the audience, delivering fast-paced, dirty wee jokes and stories as easily as if he was down his local having a laugh with some pals.

Starting with ‘accidentally rolling fajitas at the dinner table like joints’, he ranged all over the place, to sleepovers, to Wikipedia, to the diet tips that let him lose four stone in 10 years and solving the Greek Debt Crisis. It was eye-wateringly brilliant.

Remember that line in the sand, dividing ‘heckling’ from ‘disruption’? It turns out that Kevin is the master of the line.

Completely unflappable, heckles were deflected with perfect precision; not once was he lost for words, or unable to fire back with a line that made the loud-mouth hang their head in shame.

Heckling Kevin Bridges is like shooting a tank with a water pistol. A really, really funny tank.

The only tarnish on the otherwise gold-standard evening was the two men in the front row who managed to cross that line by constantly talking.

Kevin’s gentle ribbing and teasing gave way to sterner rebukes as it became apparent that they were moving into ‘sustained heckling’ territory, and eventually a request to leave.

As the stewards ushered them out the door (to thunderous applause), Kevin felt he had to apologise for the ‘steroided, Tennents-fuelled gibberish’ that may have caused any loss of enjoyment for the audience.

For a short time after that, it seemed like Kevin’s blood was understandably boiled, and he didn’t relax back into a natural groove for a bit, occasionally lamenting that he was losing the audience’s enthusiasm (he wasn’t, not at all).

He soon recovered his footing and was back at the top of the game- where he rightfully belongs. Kevin Bridges ended the show as he began- making everyone laugh until it hurt.

Stepping back out for an encore and a little audience banter, he was asked if he would be return:
“Of course I’ll come back. I’ll come back if youse all do.”

Nae danger, Kevin. We’ll be there.

Alex Garrick-Wright

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.



Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.