REVIEW: Jawbone Brewing pours community into its Comedy Night

By Emily Dalton

24th Nov 2023 | Opinion

An intimate comedy gig, but everyone is friends here. (Photo: Emily Dalton)
An intimate comedy gig, but everyone is friends here. (Photo: Emily Dalton)

Every second Monday of the month independent Jawbone Brewing in Twickenham holds a comedy night welcoming very up-and-coming comedians. The next show is Monday 11 December

Situated in the brewery itself, it felt semi-apocalyptic: as if comedy is illegal and can only be performed under the cover of darkness, in between brewing tanks. 

Although the 'Armageddon' metaphor wore off when I looked at the audience members. Call me sceptical but it is perhaps unlikely my human catastrophe crew would be between 10-40 years older than me. Still, comedy is ageless and you're never too old to laugh. 

Outside Jawbone Brewing. (Photo: Heather Nicholls)

It was a very intimate gig: two sets of benches grace either side of the platform stage, with one X-factor like panel in the centre. 

Although normally I would say being front row to a comedy show is not for the faint-hearted, the comics were good at assessing which of the audience members did or did not want to chat. I concluded: the comedians are more scared of you than you are of them. 

There was a lovely bit of milling around and chatting between sets- so you can talk to your partner/mate/neighbour what they think of the show, share a joke or grab another drink. I went for the latter. 

As a brewery, you will not be surprised that the drinks were fantastic. There was a strong handful of Jawbone beers on tap to try; the pale ale Bone Idle was a lovely colour and delicious. I stuck to the gin which was from another local distillery not too far as the crow flies. 

Jawbone Brewing serves some cracking drinks. (Photo: Emily Dalton)

The night is structured with a host, warming up the crowd and playing some topical notes (when I went, David Cameron had just come back onto the scene in Downing Street). 

It's not easy making a group of strangers feel part of a community and a shared experience. For those who have not been to a comedy gig before, or not for a while, it is a welcome re-set from the eat/sleep/work/Netflix repeat cycle. The comics give you space to relax and take the mick out of yourselves whether individually or collectively as British society.  

The host quickly got the audience familiarised with each other, something which the acts could later expand on: the silver fox who looks like he's a 'Dodgy Dave' who tries to sneak into Ibiza and be one of the lads' or the over-enthusiastic woman at pains to imply she's not 'posh', despite living in Richmond. 

Comedy line-up. (Photo: Supplied)

There was a good and diverse bill of comedians: from the relatable (?) divorcee joking about over-competitive mums in Strawberry Hill (Jenny Laville), the 25-year-old country boy adjusting to the city (Al Kitson) and the guy who like to say what everyone is thinking...about other audience members (Muhsin Yesilada). 

Four comedians plus a short bonus one- it is an enjoyable (although not a short) evening. Whether the comics were trying out new material, finding their niche or simply trying to give us a good Monday night- it was a joyous carousel of stand-up. 

Jawbone's comedy night is missing the younger audience, and I'm not sure why. When the jokes got on the sexier side of things, there was a mixed response from the crowd. It was largely to do with the taste and the age of the audience, rather than the jokes themselves. In a rare moment of self-awareness, occasionally the stand-up would chuckle: "You're not going to like this one". This made it all the funnier.  

Previously a boatyard, Jawbone draws upon its nautical heritage to make it feel rustic and authentic. (Photo: Emily Dalton)

Jawbone Comedy makes a chilled night out- allowing for some hilarious entertainment and chats in between. There was a lovely community feel as you can sit on benches to chat with a stranger, or just stand at the bar nursing a drink and absorbing it all. 

From supporting a local and independent business, to being a sounding board for new comedians on the circuit, it is a wholesome and community-orientated night. Even if the jokes are not so innocent. 

Perfect for a pre-Christmas catch-up or even a festive night-out, buy your tickets to the next Comedy night (8pm 11 December) here


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