The Frog and Bucket Comedy Club has been the pinnacle for new comedy talent in Britain and the Northwest and has seen many of its home grown comedian’s like Steve Coogan, Peter Kay and John Bishop go on to reach stardom and recognition.

Beat the Frog, a weekly and enjoyable event allows first time comedians the opportunity to perform five minutes of their own material and try to win the audience over. Three members of the audience each were given a large card with the ‘Beat the Frog!’ Logo printed on the front. If they weren’t enjoying the performance on stage they would raise their cards ups to show their disapproval. If all three cards were raised, the horn would honk and Beck’s ‘Loser’ would play as the newcomer left the stage. If they managed to survive the five minute deadline they would go through the final where the audience would clap for their favourite stand up, claiming them the winner of the event.

Once I entered the club and seated at my table by the friendly staff I was immediately taken in by the modern saloon style atmosphere of the venue. Filled with audiences both old and new and the red walls covered with artistic paintings of recognisable comedians who once graced this venue with their presence. Our host for evening, David Longley was both entertaining and funny, who made everyone feel welcomed and got everyone laughing. He handled the event very well and managed to maintain order with his comedic approach if audience members were beginning to act out of hand.

The ten newborn stand-ups, appeared both nervous but confident to give it their best in order to beat the frog. Some were enjoyable like Arielle Souma, who won the crowd over with her observational view on modern dating and what women really want from a man. A few showed some potential that could be developed over time and with more practice. The rest however were really uncomfortable and painful to watch. From one comic rambling some awkward statements whilst cleaning someone’s shoes to another losing the crowd’s respect in under one minute.

Overall I really enjoyed the event and how it gives support and opportunity to people interested in following a path into stand-up comedy as well as entertaining and involving from the audience.

Reviewer: Luke Richards

Reviewed: 4th January 2016