Frank Hampster’s Fart Lab is a show with a bit of an identity crisis. Its subject matter ensures that it’s a hit with kids but it is performed at 8:30pm. It’s almost watershed timeslot suggests that we can expect plenty of ribald toilet humour but being at the Clean Comedy Hub there is only the mere hint at smut. It’s a curious little show indeed!
To appeal to the kids (or kids at heart) there were plentiful sound clips of flatulence, whoopee cushions to play with and lots of treats for those willing to join in the audience participation. For the adult punters, this show is exactly what it says on the tin – monologues about the history of fart jokes, facts about flatulence and many, many jokes about farts – some basic, others quite clever. It certainly attempted to cater for everyone.
There were a few junior night-owls in the audience that I was a part of and it seemed as though Frank was directing the majority of his performance their way in an attempt to hold their interest. Some of the monologues were delivered in a slightly dry manner which not only robbed them of their humorous power but you could see the attention of the little ones waning. They were allowed to run amok, so much so that it threatened to drag Frank away from his scripted material, but he did a good job in maintaining control.
He employed many references of yore and some gentle innuendo in his script that, while tickling the fancy of the mature folk, flew over the kid’s heads. One interesting aspect was that Frank tapped into some school yard nostalgia in the form of juvenile fart jokes and the associated rituals. My inner seven year old chuckled when he recognised these chants of the playground and even learnt some unfamiliar ones used at other schools. The patriotic (possibly seditious) finale was an inspired highlight of silly fun for all.
This performance was an audio / visual extravaganza (thankfully not an odoriferous one) with fart sounds coming thick and fast within a PowerPoint presentation to aid his comedic lecture. A number of clips pulled from the internet provided some chuckles but the random clips from TV and movies were purely excuses for more farts and didn’t particularly aid the jokes.
The advertising pretty much tells you if you’re likely to enjoy this show. If you think that fart jokes are the pinnacle of humour you will have a whale of a time, but if your tastes are more sophisticated you may be left a little cold.
Frank Hampster’s Fart Lab is at The Clean Comedy Hub
For Tickets and information see the MICF website: