Review: Dave Bibby: Baby Dinosaur, Ed Fringe, by Hannah Goslin

 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

I was first introduced to Bibby’s comedy when he invited me to his Ed Fringe show back in 2019. Since, I have been an avid follower and fan of his comedy.

So when his invite for his new show came into my inbox, I was absolutely delighted, and even more so, when I saw what it was about… DINOSAURS. I mean, comedy… dinosaurs… what isn’t there to like?

Bibby’s show is about creating a show in between having two children. At the same time, it’s a time machine for us oldies who loved the original Jurassic Park and the 90’s. These seem like contrasting themes, but it works. The nostalgia, meeting the idea of ageing and new life. It all makes sense.

The main concept of the production is hugely involving the audience to create a version of the original film but in a 2023 setting. The millionaire is replaced by Elon Musk, our audience members jump in and out as on stage characters and… in themselves are hilarious and so engaged. We all have a chance to be involved, with queues to shout out and make noises but also with a script passed around to read when we are prompted. Bibby is hot on the responses and ad lib, and enjoys the improvisation and surprises that come from us as much as they come from him. There are some Jurassic Park lovers who clearly love the comedic approach as much as Bibby does, with his love and passion coming through with knowledge and performance.

We begin to think that this is a love letter to the end of his career. His love for his young family and being away from them is expressed, alongside gorgeous images of them and our heart sinks to think this is it, after an hour of pure joy. But, while partially scripted, I like to think our involvement and enthusiasm with said script helped to solidify how much Bibby should continue making these shows. Yes, the outcome is exactly this and the planned conclusion, but I hope our responses help to make it a reality.

Jurassic Park/Dinosaur/children-person or not, Baby Dinosaur is an absolute triumph of a comedy show, from how smooth it ran, to the right involvement of the audience, to constantly belly laughs. It’s everything you want from a comedy show and more.

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