Fringe review: Carson & Taylor Promise To Do A Bunch Of Flips… and succeed


carson and taylor fringe 2022
Photo by Paul Aihoshi

CARSON & TAYLOR PROMISE TO DO A BUNCH OF FLIPS written and performed by Carson Pinch and Taylor Davis (Pinch Productions). At Ada Slaight Hall (585 Dundas East). July 14 at 8:30 pm, July 15 at 1:15 pm, July 16 at 1 pm. See listing. Rating: NNNN

How do you set yourself apart from all the other sketch comedy shows at the Fringe? If you’re Carson Pinch and Taylor Davis, you add a long gym mat and promise to do some flips – gymnastic, stunt-like and verbal.

The gimmick pays off in this very funny and entertaining hour.

Whether they’re physicalizing a terrible employee-boss relationship via a repeated routine with a desk or flipping an electric guitar around their body, they indeed deliver on that promise. They even riff on the concept of flipping houses – but probably not in the way you’re thinking.

The two have a comfortable rapport – they’ve known each other since they were teens – and contrast beautifully onstage. Pinch has an open, cheerful, almost naive demeanour, while Taylor exudes a dark and unpredictable energy. That works nicely for one of their strongest sketches, in which Pinch plays a guy whose visit to a park is interrupted by Davis’s annoying wasp.

Paul Bates’s efficient direction ensures everything goes smoothly, including the between-scenes cleanup by an assistant, which provides some big surprises.

After a very amusing bit about the world’s worst bartender, the most ambitious sketch involves the two as a pair of figure skaters (more “flips,” get it?) awaiting their scores from the world’s judges. The way their faces slowly change as the scores are read out is physical comedy at its finest. They deserve Olympic-sized laughs.

Speaking of judges, NOW Magazine itself gets a mention; apparently the two receive a 1N review mid-way through the show, with the critic claiming there aren’t enough flips. By the end of the show, they more than earn those extras Ns.

Carson Pinch is one of NOW’s 10 artists to watch at this year’s Fringe. See the full list here.




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