Since being crowned winner of the second season of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, loveable plus-sized Scottish drag artist, Lawrence Chaney, has, through their various internet shows, live appearances and pop-ups on TV, proven that they are showbiz up to their feather boa and beyond. Having returned from a Las Vegas hosting gig, their first Fringe show now arrives in Edinburgh to sold-out houses and high expectations.
Taking more of a solo stand-up approach than the cabaret direction adopted by friend and fellow Drag Queen UK royalty, Baga Chipz, Chaney’s time spent over in the States has obviously paid dividends. Emerging in an Irn Bru dress, they are a complete natural on stage, whether werking it to Lizzo or opining on everything from diet to exercise to dating, even if first Fringe night nerves did cause the old tongue trip up.
While Chaney oozes big-hearted charisma, the material isn’t always there. One expects (nay, demands) a good smattering of smut and profanity in a show like this, but the quick, bone-dry wit and zinger lines that were their USP on Drag Race are sometimes missing. The dance routines never really extend beyond graceless jiggling, and one skit set to food-related dance hits goes on a smidgen too long. But when the lines do land, they are very amusing, indeed. (“I had to buy two seats on the plane but only got one fucking meal!”)
Although genuine surprises are scarce here, Overweight and Over It! is an entertaining hour in the presence of someone who has the chops to be around, not only playing the cult circuit, but to properly break through and enjoy enduring mainstream success.
Queen-sized comedy – ★★★ 3 stars