Jack Dee: Hammersmith Apollo, London, 1994
Jack Dee: Bridgewater Hall, Manchester, 1997
Jack Dee Live: Corn Exchange, Cambridge, 1998
Jack Dee Live: Hammersmith Apollo, London, 1999
Jack Dee: So What Live: Hammersmith Apollo, London, 2012
Jack Dee’s Helpdesk: Soho Theatre, London, 2014
Arnold Brown’s 80th Birthday Bash: The Comedy Store, London, 2016
Always Be Comedy (2 shows): The Tommyfield pub, Kennington, London, 2017
I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue Live! New Wimbledon Theatre, London, 2020
Stand Up For Jeremy Hardy: Hammersmith Apollo, London, 2022
Always Be Comedy: The Tommyfield pub, Kennington, London, 2023
Jack Dee is a master of deadpan. He is a curmudgeonly sulk who knows all the angles when it comes to making an audience laugh. I have indeed seen him a number of times and have enjoyed his stage performances enormously.
I first saw Dee live in the nineties and he is a perfectionist at mithering. Always wearing his dapper suit and loosened tie, he always has a large number of annoyances to get of his chest, which make up his instantly recognisable and very humorous routines. Occasionally he will summon up only the energy to raise a sneer or a watery smile at the audience and it works brilliantly because the crowd are always consistently laughing out-loud.
Therefore, over the years Dee has proved he is an excellent and unique stand-up but when I saw his most recent tour So What Live in 2012, for an encore he brought out an undersized guitar and sang his way though some of the dead-end jobs he had before comedy.
Jack Dee’s Helpdesk, which I saw at the Soho Theatre in 2014, turned him as host with a panel of comedians into ill-equipped agony aunts offering possible solutions to audience suggested problems.
In 2017, he made two surprise appearances at Always Be Comedy where I watched the great comedian from the front row. Seeing him perform new material to a small crowd in a perfectly sized comedy room was wonderful to see, and on both occasions, the material was up-to-date, relevant and extremely irritable to him making it very funny.
The popular comedian with the grumpy face was the compere when I saw a live version of the long running BBC Radio 4 panel comedy quiz; I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue Live! at the New Wimbledon Theatre, London in January 2020. Dee was brilliant at keeping order of the guest panel to the greatest hit games that were featured in the show. Frequently he could be seen hiding laughter from the bizarre answers to the games and Dee’s take on the other long running comedy panel game Just A Minute where delivered a very funny impersonation of host Nicholas Parsons was inspired.
Dee hosted the second half of a memorial night Stand Up for Jeremy Hardy that I watched at the Hammersmith Apollo in January 2022. Postponed for 2 years, Hardy sadly died prematurely in 2019 and Dee, the host of I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue, the long running radio show where Hardy was a regular guest, was inspired in comparing the tribute night. He hosted a live segment of Clue on the tribute night as well introducing comedy acts and performing material, which included a brilliant skit on clapping for the NHS.
The great comedian returned to Always Be Comedy in April 2023 performing new material including a wonderful routine about proposed appearances on popular TV shows. His performance was so funny that he garnered a deserved standing ovation from me after making my sides ache from laughing so hard.
Over time, Dee has deservedly become one of Britain’s most popular and amusing comics that can effortlessly entertain and amuse an audience.