Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2022 Theatre Review: Bianca Del Rio – Unsanitized (Pleasance at EICC) ★★★★

This may be her very first time at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, but rest assured, Bianca Del Rio is taking it all in her stride. Having spent so much of the pandemic forced to stay at home, she’s all worked up and back doing what she does best – coming for everyone with her infamous Rolodex of Hate and quick-witted insults.

Bianca Del Rio. Photo credit: Matt Crockett.

Despite performing over 109 shows since last August, this self-professed “clown in a gown” is showing no sign of slowing down. Bianca takes us on a well-crafted, highly comical journey through her experience of lockdown; from being cooped up at home (inebriated) with her dogs in Palm Springs to inappropriate work opportunities while performing live was out of bounds, to how she managed to get back to what she refers to as “new normal”. She bookends this by directly engaging the audience – firstly by insulting the whole of the front row whilst finding out what they did for work during the pandemic, and finishing the night with a Q&A shade-fest. If being read or insulted isn’t your bag, avoid the front three rows like the plague!

Bianca is a very experienced stand-up comedian with an excellent audience rapport – it’s truly a talent to insult people as viciously as she does and still manage to keep them on side. She scatters gags and barbs about fellow Ru Paul’s Drag Race alumni which, alongside her narrative-based quips, showcase some of her most creative witticisms of the night. Political correctness is out the window, which is completely necessary for her style of comedy, but at times the jokes felt a little dated or predictable. Bianca’s repeated line, “I don’t care”, springs to mind. Her sold out tours speak for themselves, but with her level of talent she is more than capable of hitting us with more brand new invective.

Bianca Del Rio. Photo credit: Matt Crockett.

If you like your comedy filled with unapologetic take downs, hateful insults, filthy imagery and the fear of being read for filth, Unsantitized is the show for you. 

By Liz Zack

Bianca Del Rio: Unsanitized plays at Pleasance, Edinburgh until 26th August 2022

Click here for tickets and more info.

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