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Angry man Glenn just fails to pull the Wool over our eyes; GLENN WOOL : JONGLEURS, GLASGOW.

DESPITE having a name like a character from Monarch of the Glen, Glenn Wool is a Canadian stand-up.

He makes a point of telling us about his nationality because he would not want us to mistake him for an American.

Unless, of course, he fouls up in which case pretending to be American can come in handy.

"You mess up overseas, there is no reason to bring your whole country down," he reasons.

"Puke over a pool table in Belgium, all you have to do is shout: `That's how we do it in Philadelphia'."

Not that the Americans are the only people he takes a swipe at.

The British get a kick in the pants too and he even takes his life into his own hands by baiting his Glasgow audience with a wisecrack about scurvy.

But then that is Wool's way. Some comics like to get all cosy with their audience and wrap them up in a comedy duvet.

Wool prefers to provoke them, tie them in a sack and drown them in a canal of sarcasm. He likes to get under the skin of the audience and really niggle at them.

So there are skits on whether or not there will be drugs in heaven and he takes a poke at Eminem fans by pointing out that the rapper's name almost spells Men In Me backwards.

It is a bit of a high risk strategy.

Good comedy often has an edge, but if you make the mistake of pushing it too far, then the audience will soon turn against you.

Even worse, the comedian who sneers at everything can come over like a stroppy teenager and anyone who has seen Harry Enfield's Kevin knows that they are a breed who are funny for all the wrong reasons.

Not all of it hit the mark, but it made a nice change from hearing the usual young bloke lines about why his girlfriend doesn't understand him and why the toilet seat should always be left up.

Wool does the Angry Young Man persona well. He just needs to hone him a little.

JONATHAN TREW
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Copyright 2003 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jul 3, 2003
Words:354
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