Comic, writer and self-confessed hypochondriac Dave Spikey is feeling good now he’s back on stage with his latest show.
The star and co-creator of cult television comedy “Phoenix Nights” spoke to us about his new stand-up show “Punchlines” which comes to The Muni at Colne in September.
And the Bolton-born former NHS biomedical scientist revealed how yet again his interest in all things medical proved the inspiration for his latest routine.
“I was actually in a doctor’s waiting room reading an article in the ‘Reader’s Digest’ about how our brains are a pattern making machine.
“I had a little inkling of an idea about doing a show where the punchline to jokes is revealed before the joke. We have a pattern and conclusion in our head when told a story where our brain sometimes jumps ahead.
“I thought it would be good to project a series of punchlines on a screen in the first half and then develop the story later. Telling jokes is a form of storytelling, it’s the way you weave in and out of stories that can surprise people.
“In the words of the late great comic Frank Carson ‘it’s the way you tell em.’ The tour started earlier in the year and it’s gone down really well.”
Between 2008/9 Dave toured his immensely successful show “The Best Medicine” in more than 100 venues nationwide, released a DVD of the tour and had his first book published – “He Took My Kidney, Then Broke My Heart” which took a look at ambiguous newspaper headlines which often leave themselves open to misinterpretation.
Dave also revealed how working in medicine taught him about the importance of laughing in darker moments.
Indeed, Dave admits that his most famous comic creation, the neurotic Jerry “The Saint” Sinclair from Phoenix Nights, is an extension of himself.
“I’m definitely a hypochondriac and Jerry was pretty much me to be honest. When I first entered comedy I wanted to shy away from my medical background but I realised there are a lot of funny moments there. If you didn’t laugh you’d cry working in a medical setting.”
Dave’s trip to Colne on September 29th is not the first time he has visited the town – he was greeted by a white-out when leaving the Muni some years ago.
The man who has called the north his home all his life admitted he prefers northern gigs.
“I am one of them which I think makes it easier. Having said that, I haven’t noticed a massive amount of difference with audiences over the years.
“I was initially very conscious of my accent but my fears were soon dispelled.”
Looking ahead, Dave has a cameo role in an upcoming independent film and is also penning a new comedy with Jim Cartwright.
As for Phoenix Nights, Dave doesn’t believe it will rise again although admits it still has “cult status”.
He added: “I’m very busy with this live show, writing and television appearances. Phoenix Nights has become something of a cult show but I don’t think it will return.”
“Punchlines” will show at The Muni, Colne, on Thursday, September 29th, at 7-30pm. Call 01282 661234 to book tickets.