EARLIER in the day, Tim Vine had conducted the plaque-unveiling ceremony for the Ken Dodd Bar, in the company of Lady Anne Dodd, at the Grand Opera House. "There's a lot hinging on this," he joked as he stood by the door.

Doddy had specialised in a laughter medicine known as The Happiness Show, visiting the GOH so often that the plaque crowned him "Our Favourite Visitor". Vine called himself "a mere student" by comparison, who had drawn inspiration from the Knotty Ash comic's mastery of the short, sharp gag, and certainly he is in the Dodd old-school tradition of good, clean fun, no swearing and joke after punning joke.

The squire of silliness from Cheam eschews the subjects you were always told not to discuss at the table – politics, religion and sex – in favour of ice cream, nibble feeders and pixie football. "This is comedy without a message," he says, but frankly there should be more room for silly stuff as an antidote to the ghastliness all around.

"You've seen the sunset; you've tasted the milk, now here's the idiot," he says from the wings before entering in amber polo shirt and blue shorts, like some psychedelic scout master, with an ice cream cone and Flake on his head. Well, that's the milk bit dispensed with, and he'll end the show with "A sunset is....at the end of the day". It's all in the timing, allied to nimble physicality, that together make Sunset....and Vine such a jubilant jamboree of jokes, absurdly daft home-made props and dotty ditties.

Sunset. Tick. Milk. Tick. Idiot? Like Shakespeare's fools, Tim Vine is the sage clown for whom the pun is mightier than the sword.