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2019 Edinburgh Fringe

Best-reviewed Edinburgh Fringe shows 2019

London Hughes

There were more than 2,000 different comedy shows to pick from at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, staging in excess of 38,000 performances. But which of them, according to the press, were the best?

As part of our coverage of the annual festival, we log every review for every comedy, which this year meant more than 4,500 reviews from just over 100 sources.

Notably, this is a drop in press output compared to 2018 - both in terms of the publications covering the festival and the number of reviews published, backing up recent concerns that rising costs involved in attending and covering the festival are impacting on coverage.

With the Fringe now complete for another year and the last ratings published, we present our annual list of shows from the comedy section of the programme that were reviewed at least 8 times and managed to average 4 stars or higher. London Hughes (pictured) was the individual to score the most 5 star reviews (seven).

Click on any name to see the show's details and full list of reviews and feature coverage.

Foil Arms and Hog - Swines. Image shows from L to R: Sean Flanagan, Sean Finegan, Conor McKenna

Foil Arms & Hog

Rhys James: Snitch. Rhys James

Rhys James

London Hughes: To Catch a D*ck. London Hughes

London Hughes

Dreamgun: Film Reads


Suzi Ruffell: Dance Like Everyone's Watching. Suzi Ruffell

Suzi Ruffell



Josie Long: Tender. Josie Long

Josie Long

Frisky & Mannish's PopLab. Image shows from L to R: Matthew Floyd Jones, Laura Corcoran

Frisky & Mannish

Rhys Nicholson - Nice People Nice Things Nice Situations. Rhys Nicholson

Rhys Nicholson

Myra DuBois: Dead Funny. Gareth Joyner

Myra DuBois

Max & Ivan: Commitment. Image shows from L to R: Max Olesker, Ivan Gonzalez

Max & Ivan

Garrett Millerick: Smile. Garrett Millerick

Garrett Millerick

Rob Auton: The Time Show. Rob Auton

Rob Auton

Jen Brister - Under Privilege. Jen Brister

Jen Brister

Tiff Stevenson: Mother. Tiffany Stevenson

Tiff Stevenson

Crystal Rasmussen presents The Bible 2 (Plus a Cure for Shame, Violence, Betrayal and Athlete's Foot) Live!. Crystal Rasmussen

Crystal Rasmussen

Andrew Maxwell: All Talk. Andrew Maxwell

Andrew Maxwell

Chris Washington: Raconteur. Chris Washington

Chris Washington

Adam Hess: My Grandad Has a Fringe. Adam Hess

Adam Hess

Ed Byrne: If I'm Honest. Ed Byrne

Ed Byrne

Ahir Shah: Dots. Ahir Shah

Ahir Shah

Jenny Bede: The Musical. Jenny Bede

Jenny Bede

Jessica Fostekew: Hench. Jessica Fostekew

Jessica Fostekew

Holly Morgan: Is a Witch. Get Her!. Holly Morgan

Holly Morgan

Desiree Burch: Desiree's Coming Early!. Desiree Burch

Desiree Burch

Jordan Brookes: I've Got Nothing. Jordan Brookes

Jordan Brookes

Goodbear: Dougal. Image shows from L to R: Joe Barnes, Henry Perryment


Laura Lexx: Knee Jerk. Laura Lexx

Laura Lexx

Sara Barron: Enemies Closer. Sara Barron

Sara Barron

Jayde Adams: The Ballad of Kylie Jenner's Old Face. Jayde Adams

Jayde Adams

Catherine Cohen: The Twist...? She's Gorgeous. Catherine Cohen

Catherine Cohen

John Robins: Hot Shame. John Robins

John Robins

Jonny Pelham: Off Limits. Jonny Pelham

Jonny Pelham

Joz Norris Is Dead. Long Live Mr Fruit Salad.. Joz Norris

Joz Norris

Alasdair Beckett-King: The Interdimensional ABK. Alasdair Beckett-King

Alasdair Beckett-King

Matt Forde: Brexit, Pursued By A Bear. Matt Forde

Matt Forde

Troy Hawke: Tiles of the Unexpected!. Milo McCabe

Troy Hawke

Matt Parker: Humble Pi. Matt Parker

Matt Parker

Tom Parry: Parryoke!. Tom Parry

Tom Parry

Crybabies: Danger Brigade


Find all the reviews for any show

In the theatre section of the programme, Sh!t Theatre, Bryony Kimmings, Richard Gadd, Bobby & Amy, Fishbowl, Boar, Jekyll & Hyde and Wild Swimming were the top comedy shows.

As in previous years of running this analysis, we would like to stress that our calculations make no distinction between established broadsheet reviewers and blogs run by fans and students, and the potentially differing views on what a five star show is; plus there is a clear bias in this list towards already established and acclaimed comedy acts who are able to attract more press attention.

A number of hidden gems will doubtless have been overlooked in this list. For example, The Dead Ducks don't appear above as they fell below the 8 review threshold, but the two reviews they did get were both a full five stars, suggesting with more reviewers in they could have perhaps made the list.

Published: Thursday 5th September 2019

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