‘I might just jug­gle’

Harefield Gazette - - LEISURE -

years, he has been ac­cused of spew­ing al­most ev­ery imag­in­able form of ha­tred in his act – from racism and ho­mo­pho­bia to sex­ism and anti-dis­abled rhetoric.

But he has said pub­licly that, con­trary to some peo­ple’s per­cep­tions, in re­al­ity he holds none of th­ese prej­u­dices.

He does ad­mit, how­ever, that some mem­bers of his au­di­ence do come to his shows for the wrong rea­sons.

“Oh yeah. They’re there be­cause of the per­cep­tion,” he says.

“‘Go on Jimbo, tell ‘em all to f*** off home!’ in­nit, to hide be­hind that thing.

“Now me, I don’t say all for­eign­ers are hor­ri­ble – just most of them. But that’s noth­ing to do with race. That’s to do with peo­ple who are not Bri­tish, you know?

“Do you know the dif­fer­ence?”

In 2013, Jim was the sub­ject of an en­tirely dif­fer­ent sort of con­tro­versy – one that, this time, was com­pletely be­yond his con­trol.

He had been ready to en­ter the Celebrity Big Brother house when he was ar­rested by of­fi­cers in­ves­ti­gat­ing Op­er­a­tion Yewtree – launched in the wake of the Jimmy Sav­ill scan­dal to ex­am­ine al­le­ga­tions of his­toric sex crimes. Overnight, his world turned up­side-down.

But af­ter a “night­mare” year on po­lice bail, hav­ing never been charged, all ac­tion against him was fi­nally dropped.

And in a re­mark­able turn­around, in 2014 he walked out of the BB house as the win­ner, met by cheers and ap­plause, plus a le­gion of new fans, who he says he now wants to em­brace.

He says: “When I won Big Brother, I sud­denly got four mil­lion twit­ter fol­low­ers, and those four mil­lion twit­ter fol­low­ers (a) are very young, and (b) aren’t used to go­ing to a theatre.

“And if they are used to go­ing to a theatre, they don’t want to pay 50 quid for two tick­ets. They can’t af­ford it.

“So my idea was to get amongst all this young crowd, who can see com­edy very, very cheaply, and let them know that I’m a co­me­dian, that I’m funny, and that they can come and see me – and when they grow up to be rich and mid­dle-aged, they can still come and see me, if I’m still alive, so there was a com­mer­cial as­pect as well.”

Scan­ning Jim’s au­di­ence from the crowd shots in his last DVD, No Fur­ther Ac­tion, which fo­cussed on ‘that year’s’ drama, most ap­pear to be of, as the French say, ‘d’un cer­tain âge’.

But Jim says this does not rep­re­sent his en­tire de­mo­graphic.

“I’ve got a spread – nearly dead to 18 – which is good.

“But to get amongst the young ones you’ve ei­ther got to go and do a show at the Com­edy Store, with all them other un­funny comics, or you go and do places like I’m do­ing now, where it’s af­ford­able.

“And it’s also in a place where peo­ple are used to hav­ing a drink, and they’re used to the com­edy be­ing in their face and more in­ter­ac­tive.”

Among the places Jim is re­fer­ring to is the Com­edy Bunker, in Ruis­lip, where he will be per­form­ing on Fri­day, April 17.

He ad­mits to hav­ing “no clue” what he’ll talk about on the night, pre­fer­ring to im­pro­vise, which he con­fesses is not down to any cre­ative im­pulse, but rather sheer “lazi­ness”.

“I don’t know what I’ll do un­til I stand in the wings,” he says. “It de­pends how much I’ve had to drink, what mood I’m in, the au­di­ence. I might just jug­gle. Pay me money and I can do any­thing. I’ve had five wives – be­lieve me I can jug­gle.”

One thing is guar­an­teed, how­ever, and that is that Jim’s ma­te­rial will not re­sem­ble the left-lean­ing com­edy we are ac­cus­tomed to hear­ing from so many young per­form­ers on our tele­vi­sion screens nowa­days.

In fact, Jim doesn’t care for a lot of to­day’s younger co­me­di­ans, pre­fer­ring to re­mem­ber those from the glory days of the well-trod­den pub and club cir­cuit.

“The dif­fer­ence is a lot of the kids went to uni­ver­sity,” he says.

“If they didn’t go to uni­ver­sity, they do the same type of com­edy they think would be ac­cepted by the uni­ver­sity crowd.

“Where me, I’m from the gut­ter. I’m from Charl­ton, south east Lon­don. And I make peo­ple laugh.”

He adds: “I don’t watch the com­edy [on TV]. I don’t un­der­stand it.

“If you start from who I don’t un­der­stand the most, it would be Ed­die Iz­zard, and then work your way down to Reeves and Mor­timer.

“I caught them last night. I don’t know what they’re about.

“They look like they’ve es­caped a lu­natic asy­lum. It’s like watch­ing mad peo­ple. I don’t get them at all. They don’t make me laugh.

“Now, it’s not their prob­lem. They’re bril­liant. It’s my prob­lem. I’m the prob­lem. I don’t un­der­stand it. I’m too old.

“There’s a lot of peo­ple like me though, that’s the prob­lem.”

Jim David­son will be per­form­ing at the Com­edy Bunker, at Mill Hill Golf Club, in Bar­net Way, Mill Hill, on Thurs­day, April 16 at 8.30pm, and again at the Com­edy Bunker at Ruis­lip Golf Club, in Ick­en­ham Road, West Ruis­lip, on Fri­day, April 17 at 8.30pm.

To book tick­ets, visit www.com­e­dy­bunker. co.uk.

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