Last Thursday, stuck in London on a visa extension and missing my Thanksgiving plans in the States, I decided to celebrate turkey day with the Divine David Hoyle at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern instead.
The Divine David was a late-night telly idol of mine while I was in high school, who –along with the antics of equally offbeat duo Adam & Joe – ultimately prompted me to seek out makers World of Wonder for a job, to join in the fun of making sick, twisted, delicious television.
Seeing David in the flesh for the first time was a very different experience from watching his surrealist segues on my bedroom telly, with the volume turned way down so Father wouldn’t hear. In the flesh, David maintains his razor-sharp wit and sporadically Germanic persona (“Ladies und Gentleman!”), but also reveals a deeply cerebral vein flowing through much of his comedy. Musings on the artifice of gender construction and a rant against the hetero-normative values of a “Total Top” gay online sex ad were as intelligent as they were side-splittingly funny.
Backstage after the show, David welcomed us into his dressing room with a bottle of Chardonnay in his hand. Here I gushed somewhat about the teenage idol he had been to me, to which David replied, “You were curious, and you wanted more!” I was, I did, and I got more than I ever could have imagined.