Saturday, September 30

Nobody’s Talking About Jamie – Underbelly Cowgate (Iron Belly)

I am still not 100% sure whether this is a true story or not, but honestly it doesn’t matter. Whether fact or fiction, Jamie Finn has crafted a highly relatable, consistently entertaining and at times moving performance. Charting the highs and lows of romance and friendships, Finn takes us on his journey out of his first relationship and into the whirlwind life that followed. Accompanied by numerous original songs, the best of which is ‘a song for my ex-girlfriend’s current boyfriend (Warren)’, Finn’s storytelling is hilarious and heartfelt.

The songs were all very funny, and suitably drove the plot. His voice was at times nasal and slightly out of tune, but I think this was a purposeful choice for the character. He isn’t meant to be a godly rockstar!

There are so many moments in the show that one could relate to. I was particularly empathetic of his attempt to reinvent his whole look and personality after his first relationship ended. Who hasn’t been heartbroken and decided they’re going to become a totally new person? The difference in this show is that Jamie manages it, or at least partially. He moves into an abandoned factory in London and meets his new roommate Lily. Lily is 6’3, an American, and an incredibly confident spin cycling instructor. She teaches Jamie all about pop culture, introducing him to music, art, and theatre, as well as the world of drugs. Finn’s story about accidentally snorting ketamine instead of cocaine, and the disaster that followed, was hysterical.

One of the most moving aspects of the performance, was when Finn described his relationship to Lily. He beautifully encapsulates what it’s like to have a friend that you are completely in love with, but only platonically. A friend you’re never going to sleep with, but who nonetheless means the world to you. And how when that friend finds a romantic partner, the heartbreak of losing them can be just as bad, if not worse, than that of losing a girlfriend or boyfriend. It’s not overdone, Finn doesn’t scream or wail, but you can see the hurt in his eyes as he describes how Lily decided to move out, and no longer talks to him.

Finn makes no attempts to pretend he, or his character (as I said I’m still not sure whether it was true), is flawless. He struggled to move on from his first girlfriend, and consequently placed all his eggs in the basket that Lily was offering. He lived his life around her, rather than becoming his own person. This both endears us to him and provides many moments of comedy. His realisation at the end of the play that maybe he just needs therapy is particularly funny.

In short, this was a very entertaining show. Finn is geeky and awkward, but nonetheless charismatic, and the show pops with comedy and originality. If you’re in the mood for some (fairly) light-hearted fun, I’d definitely recommend Nobody’s Talking About Jamie.

Reviewer: Ben Pearson

Reviewed: 13th August 2023

North West End UK Rating:

Rating: 4 out of 5.