Having swanned between comedy stages for over two decades, pulling faces and rattling off puns with that distinctive Irish twang, Jimeoin is the sort of comedian relegated to a distant memory: an old TV show, a radio spot, a movie, a poster with his beaming face on it.
But longevity in the laugh making trade means keeping material fresh and new – or at least convincingly pretending to do so. The jolly 47-year-old entered the “funny uncle” phase of his life some time ago, and while his shtick has naturally evolved to encompass more adult material – parenthood, marriage, (ir)responsible driving, etcetera – there is a rascal boyish charm to his performances that stays fresh as the years roll by.
In the opening minutes of WHAT?!, Jimeoin (without a trace of self-awareness) expresses his opinion that comedians these days are too focused on expressing their opinions. It’s a fitting precursor to a show completely uninterested in pushing boundaries or soapbox rants, but keeps “on message” by rolling out tried-and-tested stand-up spotted with moments of slapstick and musical comedy.
Gags about farting and blaming it on his baby, engaging in weird road games with other drivers and a hypothesis about how looking away from dog poo and looking away from ATM machines usually involve the same expression might not sound like much chop, but in Jimeoin’s hands the laugh quota remains high and the payoffs plentiful. The show may seem a mite old hat for those who fancy something a little more adventurous, but Jimeoin is right: it’s all about the jokes.
Jimeon in WHAT?! at the Athenium Theatre, 7pm Tues – Sat, 6pm Sun until 7th April.