Adventures in Culture part 8: Athletico Mince
Picture the scene: the finale of a packed show at a theatre in central London. The crowd are waving their arms to a song. The singer croons about experiencing the delights of Africa - it’s such a lovely continent to visit! There are whoops and hollers from the crowd, hanging on the act's every word. The song lyrically describes the discovery of a box on the floor somewhere in Africa. The crowd are rapt. But what is in this imaginary package?
A human head.
The audience stop swaying. The night ends. Lights go up.
Welcome to Bob Mortimer and Andy Dawson's weird and wonderful world of Athletico Mince. It's a podcast about football (in the loosest sense of the word) and it's what I found myself watching (and swaying along to) live at the Leicester Square theatre this week.
Being a creation of Mortimer, the show is surreal as you like. It takes in tall tales of vomiting snakes, bad mangoes, Sly Stallone's love of touching potatoes, Jeremy Corbyn's massage techniques, imaginary turkeys and Steve McLaren's hair island. It's popular too - tonight is part of a UK tour, most of which is sold out.
The show was loose. It was off the cuff. It was ramshackle. Bob read from prompts on a macbook and notes from his phone. Their time keeping was appalling, resorting to saying punchlines without the main set-ups to keep the show to curfew. Bob constantly started pissing himself at his own jokes. Andy drank a can of stella throughout the proceedings - even sipping from a pot of cold Dolmio white sauce when the going got tough.
In short, It was bloody brilliant.
Where to next?
It's happening! I'm going to a Mexican Wrestling night somewhere in Bethnal Green in a couple of weeks. Can't ruddy wait! If you know of a a show or activity that I MUST go to, let me know: @stephensonrich.
Until next time, keep it dense.