I attended the Mick Foley show at the Warwick Arts Centre in Coventry tonight (May 6th), and here are my thoughts on the show:
Firstly, some words about the supporting acts- they were great choices, as instead of just shoehorning in some up and coming comedian like most shows tend to do, we had two comedians who knew wrestling, were into it and just did wrestling material to fit the night- a constant theme, as all the interval and preshow music was wrestling themed and there was also some Fandangoing involved. Craig Campbell was a solid MC with good material and very adept at warming up the crowd in between sets and then we had Brendon Burns, who was excellent. He’s an award winning comedian in his own right and it shows- the material was excellent and offered a good contrast to Mick as you his comedy was that of a fan speaking to other fans, where as Mick is more ‘legend talking to fans’. Not saying one is better than the other, but having both gave the show a well-rounded feel. Burns had pitch-perfect delivery and his ending skit around the Great Khali was one of the highlights of the night. I can also never look at the RKO in the same way. As a side-note Burns was very friendly after his set, even taking the time to sign a book for me for no extra charge (and without being prompted to) despite having to rush to get a train.
Mick stole the show though- I was half expecting it to be good, but that he might be lacking in that stage craft that seasoned veterans have- but was pleasantly surprised as he really controlled the show and the crowd, kept things going at a very steady pace and patterned out all the jokes very well. The material is excellent for any wrestling fan, and it’s done in a way where it doesn’t matter if you’re just a casual fan, or the kind of person who subscribes to all the sites and podcasts- it’s easily accessible and I could even see non-wrestling fans enjoying it. I won’t spoil any of it by mentioning routines or what it goes over, but there’s stuff from all eras and it is all great, helped by the fact that Mick is a great storyteller and really knows how to build up to a really good punchline. The ending sequences was also just fantastic. Mick has a very warm and friendly feel when he’s up on the stage- sometimes you can tell when a comedian is just going through the motions on a 40-date tour and when he’s really enjoying himself- and Mick was really enjoying himself.
The only negative was the Q&A- and this isn’t Mick’s fault, as he went out of his way to mention he wanted funny questions that he could do something with- cue everyone doing the opposite and just asking questions like “Did you help Paul Bearer turn heel back in 1996?” and “What do you think of Dean Ambrose?” I’m not saying they’re not interesting questions for Mick to answer- but a comedy show isn’t the right type of environment. Although to his credit, Mick turned both of these around and got to some funny material through it, which is no mean feat, so kudos to him. The Meet and Greet that I paid extra for was also well worth it- Mick had no problems taking a picture, signing a couple things and having a brief chat. All in all- it’s a great show and it really is a special treat for any wrasslin’ fan. If you do get chance to see his show, by all means take it.