Sofie Hagen: Dead Baby Frog

★★★★
comedy review | Read in About 2 minutes
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Sofie Hagen
Published 13 Aug 2017

From the pamphlet she gives out beforehand you might assume that Sofie Hagen's third Fringe show will be an ominously dark hour, given the trigger warnings about emotional abuse, and contact details for support agencies. In fact it’s anything but, although she certainly strides deep into murky waters.

Dead Baby Frog is about Hagen's step-grandparent. Not her mum-mum or dad-dad—we should definitely adopt those Danish grandparent-naming terms—but the trucker neighbour her mother’s mum left an abusive husband for. Unfortunately he turns out to be an appalling creep too, a committed narcissist who, among other things, forces young Sofie to listen to him brag for an hour, in silence, with repercussions if she interrupts.

That sounds not wildly different from Hagen’s chosen profession, of course, but bottling up her emotions for years goes on to affect her life in far less positive ways. Great volcanic spurts of anger pour forth at inappropriate moments – although not here on the Bedlam stage, where she gets to vent more constructively, a controlled explosion of classy rage.

Now one of the Fringe’s most consistently compelling storytellers, Hagen openly gleans great joy from relating tales of her unorthodox upbringing, and admits that the highlight here is letting so many people know about that horrible weirdo, every night.

It being Hagen, there’s also a bonus whodunit involving another Fringe comedian; not quite so salacious as the sexy business in her Westlife show, but intriguing all the same. And badges bearing Dead Baby Frog’s most memorable line: “Slutty Mum-Mum.” It’s a long story.