REVIEW: Jim Davidson and Richard Digance at Kings Theatre, Southsea

Jim Davidson
Jim Davidson
Thee Hypnotics live at The Wedgewood Rooms, Southsea, April 14, 2018.  Picture: Paul Windsor

REVIEW: Thee Hypnotics at The Wedgewood Rooms, Southsea

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Seeing the funny side of Operation Yewtree was never going to be easy.

But after a “year of hell” Jim Davidson is back on stage, the winner of Celebrity Big Brother, and getting the last laugh with his side of the story.

Headlines screamed “Savile cops arrest Jim” and the comic was plunged into a police cell nightmare, endless questioning and repeated denials of historic adult sex offences, only to emerge as innocent as he started, three little words ringing in his ears: “no further action”.

Hardly the stuff of hilarity, yet Jim had the Kings audience laughing and frowning in equal measure with a candid account of his troubles.

This was not the whole show - the first half displayed his flair for cheeky smut and politically incorrect observation that is sure to challenge audiences at the Edinburgh Festival this summer.

Jim’s talent - and it is a talent - is to walk a precarious line that always just falls short of veering into racism or misogyny, by deploying genuine charm and a ruthless wit.

Along with the rest of the audience I laughed heartily, shocked by his audacity but swayed by his panache and his total absence of malice.

For this tour he’s been reunited with his old mate from forces concerts around the globe, Richard Digance, whose first-half act was the perfect build-up to Jim’s shock and awe.

Digance’s singalong comic ditties and genial reminiscences yearn for a happier world before, in his view, it went mad.

Throughout his difficulties Jim Davidson kept working, and last appeared at The Kings a year ago while on police bail. He was profuse in his thanks to audiences who have stood by him. He’ll be welcome back at The Kings any time he likes.