Jarred Christmas is returning to Edinburgh Fringe as a performer for the first time in six years, so to celebrate, we thought we’d sit down for a quick chat.
The New Zealander is bringing his ‘Remarkably Average’ to Edinburgh Fringe, running each night from 8 pm at Gilded Balloon.
The comic is instantly recognisable from his role in a series of hilarious Pot Noodle Ads, which saw him smashing through a wall on a motorbike, and the star has since appeared on shows such as Mock The Week, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, 8 out of 10 Cats, Argumental, Celebrity Total Wipeout and many more.
How the devil are you, Jarred?
I’m good, thank you. Enjoying the hot weather and sweating from places I didn’t even know you could sweat from!
What have you been up to today?
Today I have been busy setting up a “Festival of Kiwi Comedy” in the New Zealand High Commision building in London. Two nights of solo shows from kiwi comics heading to Edinburgh.
Your bio on your website doesn’t really tell us much about you, so tell us about yourself, in the style of a haiku.
Jarred is creative
He loves his family
Makes people laugh
And is a bit of a dick
Doesn’t know the structure of a haiku
Describe your comedy style.
Energetic storytelling heavily seasoned with jokes and a dash of filth.
Normally I’m moaning about rubbish websites but yours is really rather spiffing. What’s behind the comic book style?
I want to be a superhero. Also, I told the designer to go for whatever idea he wanted to. Turns out he wants to be a superhero too. I’ve got a meeting with him soon to update it.
Top trumps time. You’ve got Iron Man, I’ve got Spiderman. What you gonna choose to beat me, Special powers / Technology / Cunning / Strength?
Well, Ironman is all about technology and Spiderman is way too naive and trusting. I would build a suit for you that would suddenly turn into a glass with a pizza delivery pamphlet over the top so you would never escape, until I throw you over the back fence.
Checking you out on Twitter, I noticed that you’re quite proud of your yellow belt, it’s been a pinned tweet for over two years. Did you win any trophies during your Karate Kid years?
The yellow belt is one step up from white belt. I achieved nothing karate wise other than learning a cool kick that I can’t do anymore. That photo is from a “Male Modelling and Grooming” course I did when I was 17.
And most importantly, could you do the crane kick properly?
We can all do the Crane Kick. It’s the waxing cars that’s the hardest.
So, tell us what you can about your show for the Fringe, ‘Remarkably Average’, in two sentences?
My DNA test results are average, I was wanting something exciting. But my own averageness is not going to stop me putting on a show and having a laugh about how Average we all are.
How many times have you been to the Fringe, and what’s your best memory?
I’ve been going almost every year since 2002. In 2012 I opened my show with a dance routine. I lap danced on a guy in the front row and knocked his drink into his lap. Soaking him. I asked if anyone had any spare shorts and someone did. They then lent the guy the shorts, we all exchanged email addresses and the shorts were returned washed and dried and I got to see the whole email exchange. It was hilarious and beautiful
You’ve been on the telly a few times, what’s the most genuinely enjoyable show you’ve been on?
I had a blast doing Jonathan Creek. That was so cool. Let’s dance for comic relief though was amazing. Dressing up as Madonna on the BBC was a dream I didn’t know I had until I was doing it.
I know you’ve done Mastermind, but surely Pointless is the pinnacle of TV quizzes now, have you been on there yet? And if not, why not?
I haven’t but I was a question on there. “Celebrities with the initials JC” thankfully I wasn’t a pointless answer. Maybe 5 out of 100.
You’re a big user of Twitter, so is it a place for genuine discussion and debate by well-informed individuals or a smorgasbord of vile humans arguing with each other?
Twitter is like all human endeavours. It’s full of good intentions but it’s the bad shit that gets all the attention.
People say stuff on twitter they would never say to someone’s face. If they did they would be in and out of the hospital and some of them would be fitted with straight jackets.
When was the last time you were starstruck?
I had the chance to meet Robin Williams back in 2010. I was in the same room. Comedians I was friends with knew him and were chatting to him. I just stood in a corner, full of adrenaline at the idea of talking to him. But bottled it. I thought I would say something stupid. The stupidest thing I did was miss that opportunity to shake his hand.
Touring. Good fun, too much like hard work, or a combo of both?
Touring is long hours on the road and can be lonely. But all that is outweighed by how awesome it is to be doing something you love and other people like it as well. The idea that people are choosing to come out to see you, so many decisions and plans made to come out and have a laugh at what you are saying. It’s pretty awesome. I bet there are plenty of other jobs out there harder than touring, but I guess with comedians if no one laughs then you are just a person talking and we can all do that.
What other comedian is worth checking out right now?
So many. Maisie Adam. James Nokise. Rob Deering. Andrew Bird. Laura Lexx. Judah Friedlander is in Edinburgh for a bit this year. See him.
What’s the question we should have asked you today but haven’t?
How’s that milkshake tasting?
This question wasn’t asked because you didn’t take me out for a milkshake. Finally, how do you take your coffee?
I don’t take it. I’m not a coffee guy. I’m a milkshake guy.
Catch Jarred at the Gilded Balloon in Teviot, from August 1 through to 12th, and from August 14 through to 26th.