Ellie Taylor: This Guy

★★★
comedy review | Read in About 2 minutes
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Ellie Taylor
Published 16 Aug 2017

Just as Ellie Taylor's comedy career is taking off, following a recent appearance on Live at the Apollo (with attendant misogynist YouTube comments) she's coming under pressure to have a baby. Yet despite some magnificently unsubtle grandkids hints from her mother-in-law, she maintains that she's not remotely maternal, belittling her none-too-bright nephew and joining a small, select, delightfully named WhatsApp group for childless women from her school year, truly owning their unemployed wombs.

Very much a mainstream crowd-pleaser, you never get a strong sense of how deeply this issue is affecting Taylor and how much it's simply a convenient launchpad for a series of slick, witty routines that might nevertheless benefit from harder punchlines on occasion. Picking up on the smugness of new mothers that featured in her last show about faithfulness, there's less sense of her going against the grain of conventional opinion this time round, affording her less grit to sink her teeth into.

Regardless, she's charismatic and endearingly immature and self-centred. She bemoans her journalist husband flying out to war zones and returning with tales of danger that aren't sufficiently incident-packed enough to inspire an Edinburgh stand-up hour. Lest she appear too entitled and princessy though, the former model recalls how she was cast in an air freshener commercial, an association with dreadful smells that she protests with amusing pique. Belatedly, she does discover herself becoming jealous of a new mum. But typically and humorously, she makes the moment all about what it means for her.