Theatre

Review: Joel Dommett’s final Finding Emo performance at Soho Theatre

It’ll take you approximately 35 seconds into a quick Google search to discover that Joel Dommett has an awful lot of strings to his bow.

The British comic is practically being weighed down by his long list of highly-acclaimed antics, from a stint on MTV news, to his parts on Impractical Jokers, Reality Bites, Russell Howard’s Good News and Sweat the Small Stuff. Phew.

Tonight though, he’s performing his super-successful Finding Emo show for the last time (he insists) at London’s Soho Theatre.

In my own search for a stand-up show that can make me laugh beyond the relatable nonsense of man drawers and public transport gags, Joel’s emo concept grasps at a youth I still so shamelessly lust after: being emo.

So when the 29-year-old moshes about the stage to the likes of KoRn, Slipknot and Papa Roach, I feel like the two of us would get on swimmingly if we should ever get stuck in a lift together. Luckily, that isn’t a theory I need to put to the test just yet.

Joel Dommett Finding Emo Twitpic

Photo: Twitter/@LouiseHazel

Joel’s main motive for parting ways with this routine is presumably because he’s approaching his 30th birthday this December and, as we quickly learn, this turning-of-age has a lot to do with, well, everything.

After his band played their one and only gig aged 15 in a local cricket club, Joel is now a man on a mission to finish the job before his thirties. Thanks to a bad case of sore fingers, and an unwillingness to become the real rockstars they once dreamed, the band never played their final song of the set: Papa Roach’s Last Resort. By this point, you can imagine, I’m feeling personally invested.

Now it’s Joel’s job – with MTV news and some sickening (literally) encounters with the cast of Geordie Shore under his belt – to reunite his school band and play that very last song.

Factor in the fact that one of Joel’s other school mates is in the crowd (definitely not planned and amazing timing for everyone else in the room), the show takes us through his unfortunate crushes, consequential friend fails, drunk texting tales and all the real-life woes that come with being an awkward 20-something. These include the fact he’s apparently become too old for music TV, which feels somewhat ironic now.

Joel’s delivery is seamless, but it’s his finale that sees him prove just how thorough he can be. Throughout the routine he makes digs at his small shoe size, his former penchant for fishnet tops and that brief stint as a rapper, which all come together effortlessly at the end. After the all-important rendition of Last Resort, that is.

The image of Joel skating across the stage in size 5 Wheelies, wearing a fishnet top and reciting the self-deprecating lyrics he was never actually sad enough to feel, isn’t one I’ll forget for a while. Much like the Finding Emo routine itself: unforgettable, hilarious and an unofficial tribute to emo teens.

Check out some of Joel Dommett’s routine below…

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