As Chris Martin welcomes us into the main room at the Pear Tree he points out, accurately, that this must be one of the nicest rooms at the Fringe. It’s spacious and modern, and adds to the overall feeling that The One And Only Chris Martin is a pleasant place to be at 2:45 in the afternoon. Martin was cheerful and friendly, and came onstage five minutes early to chat to the audience, gently nudging us all as close to the front row as possible. ‘I’m not here to make fun of you,’ he promised.
He kept his word, and didn’t make fun of any of us, despite a healthy amount of (voluntary) audience participation during the show. As a comedian, Martin gives off a vibe of being simply nice, chatting to individuals and making sure not to insult anyone. He makes a point of relating each of his stories to the audience, asking us if anyone knows what he means or has done something similar. It makes the set seem both more casual and more intimate.
Chris Martin, as he is quick to make clear, is not that Chris Martin. Not the one from Coldplay. This Chris Martin has a normal existence and a new marriage and no dog, all of which he proceeds to tell us about in an hour of highly relatable domestic observational comedy. The One And Only Chris Martin is both funny and well-structured, and focusses nicely on a few clear themes.
While his delivery could be a little clearer, Martin has a quietly confident stage presence. The even rhythm of the set and tame nature of his material makes the show very easy watching, but Martin avoids any risk of boredom with his own joyful energy and the audience’s constant laughter.
This is mid-afternoon comedy at its best. Nothing particularly deep, nothing life-changing, but an enjoyable hour of laughs at the hands of a talented and charismatic comedian.