Ivo Graham: Educated Guess

comedy review | Read in About 2 minutes
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Ivo Graham
Published 17 Aug 2017

Ivo Graham has a remarkable talent for spinning laughs from the unfortunate realities of his existence. Or, as he so humbly puts it, "smelting gold from the raw materials that life has dealt me". Educated Guess, it follows, is his latest piece of extractive metallurgy.

He's an old Etonian with a nervous, nerdy sensibility, and the guilty conscious informs his comic perspective nicely. He's eager to empathise and isn't afraid to dole out his own comeuppances (a brilliant tale of his unsuccessful appearance on The Weakest Link has the payoff to end all payoffs at the end of the show). This apologetic sheepishness is tempered by his geekish proclivity for the intellectual party trick – memorising every MP in the UK is an impressive length to go to for your art. 

It's polished, poised standup, with Graham rarely allowing a lull of silence as he prods and tickles with every line. His delivery is sharp, fine-tuned, precise. Between loose attempts to encompass the material in a political theme there's self-deprecating routines on his continued habit of holidaying with his parents (at the age of 26) and his eventual dismay at realising he isn't the favourite child, but rather the "available" child. 

It's a pleasure to spend an hour in his company, and he's honed his craft to the point where it feels like far less time than it is. What better way to spend your evening than shouting out "Norfolk South" and having a public school paradigm of privilege shout back "Richard Bacon" at you?