Originally not aired on 31/08/23
Episode 3, and in this episode we explore the true meaning of the Fringe: meeting producers.
Today on “Comedians In Edinburgh Getting Chai Lattes” I’m joined by Co-founder of Country Mile Productions and Head of Comedy Development at Blink Industries, Alex Cartlidge.
Although Alex’s positions sound important, his voice doesn’t. Hailing from Stoke-On-Trent, Alex has the accent to prove it. Not so much the voice of an angel, but the voice of the guy who sang Angels – the Stokey accent isn’t one you traditionally associate with positions of power in comedy.
“Ay up, duck, how you doing?” Alex said as he greeted me.
I come from a place not too far from Alex and also have a bit of an accent that makes me sound thick as fuck, but normally the Suits in comedy are much posher, much more eloquent. Alex is unashamedly stupid-sounding, and there’s something quite endearing about that.
“I hope you’re looking after yourself up here, duck,” he said, before offering to buy the chais.
He comes across friendly, possibly a tad camp – although the way he makes love to women certainly doesn’t.
“Missionary, minimal kissing, and absolutely no butt-stuff,” he explained.
I tried not to be too taken with his seeming down-to-earthness, as I didn’t quite trust Alex yet. I recently won an award, the prize of which includes a script commission from Channel 4, and since then production companies have been all over me, wanting me to develop the project with them. I’ve been more coveted than a ham and cheese oatcake in Stoke.
Was Alex exaggerating his working-classness in an attempt to get closer to me? Was he trying to foster a familiarity between us? You never know whether these people are being real – another producer the other day turned up to meet me in a full Adidas tracksuit.
“Alex, can I ask you a question?”
“Sure can, me duck.”
“How much is a pint of milk?”
“Ermm, well duck, it’s…. Erm… ooo,” Suddenly his accent changed. “Uh uh, well - it all depends on the markets,” he started to sound more posh by the second, “you’ve got to realise that since Rishi took over at the end of the last year, the pound has stabilised,” he was now doing that weird thumb pointing thing politicians do, “we’ve had tough decisions to make and we need to get inflation under cont–”
“Sorry mate,” I said. “I think we’re done here.”
I chugged the rest of my chai and left.
“Ta-ra, duck,” I said.
See you next time! X