Friday 30 October 2015

Milton Jones and the Temple of Daft, Basingstoke, 20th March 2015

My son (now 18) loves Milton Jones' humour, so part of his birthday present was tickets to see him in Basingstoke again.

The first time we'd seen Milton Jones we'd all really enjoyed it, but a second visit a couple of years ago left me wondering if maybe I'd seen enough.

So, having first encountered Milton on Radio 4, I was pleased to see "...Temple of Daft" is based on the same kind of premise as one of the radio shows, where he'd recount his various exploits in a particular career.

Temple of Daft (If the posters and the title don't give it away) was his attempts to revive his Archaeology career.

Of course it was really just a loose premise to include the kind of puns, one-liners and word plays that Milton is famous for, but I, personally, found the plot added something (other reviewers, seemingly not familiar with his use of this style in the past, seemed confused by it).

It's been far too long to recall any of the jokes, but, as usual they came thick and fast and were mostly very funny and only one or two were familiar from previous shows or TV appearances (unlike some comedians).

In the past Milton has started the show as his grandfather, in a kind of prequel, but this time he was his explorer Great Uncle Randolph Digby Jones, recounting stories of his daring-do's!

We had a rather poor support act, who's main point of 'comedy' was how racist the audience was towards him. Not funny, at all, but (his act would say) I'm probably only saying that because he was Asian or Chinese or Black or Welsh or whatever. He wasn't funny and I can't remember anything else about him than that!

Fortunately, once Milton was back after an expensive ice-cream (for us, I don't know if he had one), the rather bad taste left by the support act was swiftly washed away by the clever puns, word play and generally good-natured and distinctly oddball comedy that Milton Jones is famous for.

As a fan of the "Very World of...", I really enjoyed the plot driven construct of "Temple of Daft". Sure he (I suspect deliberately, as I've read it happened elsewhere) sometimes seemed to get a bit muddled with the plot, but it moved things forward in a distinctly "Indiana Jones" way all the time supporting his jokes and wordplay.

Personally, I found this more enjoyable than the last time I'd seen him. Straight stand up is fine, but it's a finite resource and one man constantly throwing out one liners is funny, but less so the more you see it.

Temple of Daft offered something different to support the one-liners and, for me, was a great success.

Both my wife and son enjoyed it greatly too and, if there were unhappy members of the audience, I didn't cross paths with them as we made our way through the streets as all I heard were people recounting their favourite joke or saying how they'd definitely go and see Milton Jones again.

I suspect we will too...

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