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Rollercoaster ride is a blast with bish

They offered him a Harley-Davidson. Actually, it was more of a suggestion; a rough idea, even. Ride in on the bike, and the audience will love it. But John Bishop is an arena-man now. He's also a 45-year-old father of three.

And you can't just get on a motorbike for the sake of proving a point. Not if you're middle-aged (people will talk). Which is exactly why Bishop has opted for the next best thing. Yep, this chap has got his very own amusement park slide. And he isn't afraid to use it.

Granted, Bishop doesn't need to surround himself with giant clown heads and rollercoasters. He's a gifted storyteller, and gifted storytellers usually don't require anything more than a microphone. But then, comedy shows of this size almost always involve a little extra decoration.

Maybe it's all to do with the chap's surprising ascent to the top of the comedy pile. That's right -- this witty Liverpudlian is a bit of a latecomer; a man who waited until he was in his 30s before deciding he wanted to be a comedian. But it's only in recent years that he's hit the big time.



ExtraORDINARY

Four nights at the O2 (the final show is tomorrow night)? No wonder he's celebrating in style. Thankfully, the success hasn't gone to his head. Indeed, Bishop is still an ordinary bloke who just happens to find himself in the most extraordinary of circumstances.

He also shares with us the hidden joys of getting 'the snip' as well as discussing what it's like to have a certain part of your body waxed (technically, it was for charity). But it always comes back to his family.

What works for Bishop is that he isn't interested in ramming his opinions down our throats. He simply recalls a series of fascinating experiences in his life, adding just the right amount of colour and flair to ensure his is a collection of sharp and often hilarious anecdotes.

Granted, the show could do with a little trim around the sides (two hours is way too long for any comedian to be telling jokes), but a superb finale more than makes up for the odd bump along the way. Clue: it involves the slide. Terrific stuff. HHHHI


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