Comedy Review: Richard Herring - Christ on a Bike: The Second Coming
By Ray Philp
Edinburgh Festival Fringe
RICHARD HERRING, never one to shy away from confrontation - evidenced by his controversial Hitler Moustache show of last year, and the YouTube video where he encourages a loutish heckler to re-enact Murder On The Orient Express on himself - squares up to Christianity in his latest Fringe offering, Christ On A Bike: The Second Coming, a quasi-sequel to a show he originally toured in 2001.
Ostensibly, a comedian as incisive and vitriolic as Herring should find organised religion a comedy goldmine, but it feels more like he's digging for scraps. Since even the most rudimentary stand-up routines are saturated with observations on how very silly it is to believe in Christianity, Herring's hour-long sermon on the gaping flaws of yon Bible, whilst constructed with depth and intelligence, feels like familiar territory.
That said, there's still much to be salvaged from Herring's deft narrative (a running joke about a dream sequence involving Jesus and a bike race - hence the title - is a nice touch), as well as a sterling segment on rubbish biblical names found in the opening paragraph of the New Testament. A good, and occasionally great show; just a shame he hasn't quite nailed it, so to speak.