Edinburgh Fringe: David Hasselhoff is Hoff the wall
- 22 August 2012
- From the section Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland
My seven-year-old son has only one question. Does David Hasselhoff arrive at his Fringe show in the car from Knight Rider?
The answer is important. Grown men went weak at the knees the day before when The Hoff turned up for a photocall driving the iconic car, and accompanied by two ladies in red swimsuits (a nod to his other iconic TV role in Baywatch).
The opening of his one man show on the Fringe is slightly more low key.
Kitt, the name of the speaking car, was outside the venue after the show but inside it was present only on the big screen in a 10-minute montage of The Hoff's greatest hits.
The packed Pleasance venue cheers when he appears on screen - but it's nothing compared to the whoops that greet the man himself when he appears at the back of the auditorium, fedora perched on his head, serenading members of the audience with the Nina Simone number I'm Feeling Good.
Onstage he promises an intimate, and hilarious evening of song, dance and audience interaction. And within the hour he keeps that promise, even if the hilarity is sometimes at his own expense.
Anyone looking for a revealing look at what makes Hasselhoff tick will be disappointed.
There's little in the way of anecdote, and it looks like he's reading it off an autocue.
Better luck with revealing that famous Hoff physique - still in fine shape at 60 - and almost exposed when his kilt malfunctions in the finale.
The quick turnaround of the Fringe show doesn't help.
His vocals are often rushed and hopelessly off key, which is a shame because when he's in tune, like on the Bob Seger number We've Got Tonight, he's really rather good.
But the audience don't care. What they want is to clap along to the big cheesy numbers, Jump In My Car, Leave Your Hat On (which persuades a young Spanish fan on to the stage to sit on his knee) and Do The Limbo (which sees about 50 members of the audience up on stage doing the limbo).
There's the inevitable slow motion run before the Baywatch theme music and a rendition of Freedom for the World, which shows Hasselhoff playing his famous Berlin wall gig ("a million people," he points out with pride).
It concludes with him jumping through a polystyrene Berlin wall - labelled Hoff The Wall.
Time is up but the audience is baying for more, chanting Hoff Hoff Hoff.
He arrives back onstage to the skirl of bagpipes, still attempting to fasten his kilt - and he's onto a rousing rendition of The Proclaimers' 500 Miles.
As the audience disperses, a young fan, surely not old enough to remember any of those 80s TV shows first time around, shakes his head with a smile. So awful it was awesome, he says. And I suspect most people would agree.