FRINGE PREVIEW – Pope Benedict: Bond Villain

Abie Philbin Bowman

Abie Philbin Bowman

“It’s fundamentally about our relationship with power,” says Irish comedian Abie Philbin Bowman, describing his provocatively titled show Pope Benedict: Bond Villain.

“About how once upon a time we followed rules to get into heaven; and how now we do the same kind of thing, but in an attempt to get rich instead. And the guilt of feeling like you have to do the right thing to be rewarded: when reality tends to be more awkward than that.”

A socio-political comic in a similar vein to Mark Thomas, Abie believes comedy can be an instrument of change.

“I rant on about serious stuff,” he says, “but with jokes in to stop people switching off. I like comedy which makes you think.”

Last year, Abie brought his show Jesus – The Guantanemo Years to the Fringe, which looked at modern day religious hypocrisy.

“I don’t have a problem with God,” he says. “Just with God’s customer support team.”

He also tackles economic issues: the gulf between rich and poor; and the realities of the recession.

“We’re the first generation to have contraception, cheap flights, smartphones and rainforests. It’s maybe not that bad.”

“I want to be able to turn to my kids in years to come and tell them ‘I could fly to Prague for £25 return – and the weather wasn’t trying to kill me'”.

Abie feels its important to only write comedy which he himself finds funny. With a mission to make politics fun and big ideas interesting, he’s aware his material can be seen as niche.

“Edinburgh audiences are really discerning,” he says. “And if I can do the show which appeals to that one person in fifty who’s looking for something a bit different, then I’m happy.”

Abie Philbin Bowman will be performing his show Pope Benedict: Bond Villain throughout the Edinburgh Festival Fringe from 5th-29th August at The Pleasance. For more information and tickets see

Loading Facebook Comments ...

Leave a Reply