London Hughes: To Catch A D*ck review – a raucously entertaining debut special

December 22, 2020
Jonathon Wilson 0
Comedy, Netflix
3.5

Summary

Performance is everything in this frank, raucous sexual history. London Hughes is going places.

3.5

Summary

Performance is everything in this frank, raucous sexual history. London Hughes is going places.

In the opening sketch of London Hughes: To Catch A D*ck, now streaming on Netflix, the titular comic gives herself a pep talk in the mirror before going on-stage – when the camera zooms out, we see one of the production crew is going down on her. That’s pretty much the whole show in microcosm; a lot of deliberately inflated ego, the same sentiment repeated several times and a lot of sex.

But you get the sense that London Hughes could say almost anything and make it entertaining, such is the sheer enthusiasm of her performance. This special, produced by Kevin Hart and his production team, was filmed in America during the Covid-19 pandemic, but the masked-up audience aren’t muted. They’re saved from interrogation or on-stage antics by social distancing regulations – this, thankfully, is no Nate – but the good time isn’t dimmed by the circumstances. London’s personality is too outsized to contain.

After moving to America and finding herself not just in her 30s but locked down with the rest of us in a “dickless Groundhog Day”, To Catch A D*ck is essentially a sexual history, an attempt to trace back the bizarre experiences of a woman navigating small-scale show business in England. She was fired from her first job hosting UK live p**n channel Babestation for lowering the tone and transitioned straight into kids’ TV. She went from exchanging sexual favors for designer shoes to role-playing 50 Shades of Grey with a white guy who evidently didn’t grasp the cultural implications of using a whip on a Black woman. It has been quite a journey.

The writing here is simplistic – the funniest part of the show is that there are almost no jokes in it. But London has a gift for memorable phrasing and an expert command of her expressive face; this is all performance, supported by a complete disinterest in so-called “big” or “important” topics. The pandemic gets a mention, but only as an obstacle to further sexual misadventures, and her description of Brexit as a potential face-sitting paradise seems agreeable to me. The only segment that really attempts to navigate more serious territory is some stuff about the difference in treatment between men and women in comedy, but it isn’t anything preachy so much as a frenzied attack against “wheatgrass-infused” movie stars.

London Hughes isn’t that well-known, but it seems only a matter of time until that’s rectified. Netflix has been pushing To Catch A D*ck, and the association with Kevin Hart will help it garner an audience. But really, the show stands on its own terms as a ferocious bit of frank spectacle by a performer you’ll certainly be seeing more of.


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