by Laura Ferguson
The show begins with a cute and funny homemade animation sequence. Immediately, I knew my biased nature wouldn’t matter, as the audience is already finding Myth and Legend funny. Mathewson hasn’t even appeared on stage yet!
Mathewson is a gorgeous ball of energy and seems genuinely excited to be using his degree for something but we are treated to a bevy of subjects in this show so there are many laughs outside the myth and legend theme. We are treated to anecdotes about watching The Chase, how disappointing the names of champagne can be, and the difficulties of accessing illicit material in a pre-streaming era. Mathewson has us howling and snorting with observations from geek culture and his sneaky wordplay makes me think if he played Dungeons & Dragons, he’d probably be a rogue.
As Mathewson segues into the theme more, he hilariously explains his fascination with the Greek gods with hand-drawn illustrations and explanations of the gods of Olympus. I love the way he uses the legends of so long ago to connect societal events happening even now. I’m laughing even through the sad reality that human culture hasn’t changed much in nearly 3000 years.
Mathewson is so enjoyable to watch, idly scratching the back of his head as he talks and striding energetically across the stage. His smile is ever-present and he fills the hour easily. He has the ability to talk and bounce between subjects in a very fun way but maintains the hilarity throughout with slick asides added into longer sets before heading to the bigger punchlines. It is an incredibly successful formula, and as we head into the last ten minutes of the show I have to literally hold and rub my face because it hurts from laughter but I also can’t stop.
Myth and Legend is the ambrosia of comedy, one of my most favourite hours of this years’ Comedy Festival. Mathewson reaches Olympic heights of entertainment and I feel as if I have been touched by Hedone, deity of pleasure as my friend and I relive favourite moments, our joy wafting into the cold night. Myth and Legend was so great I think it will seat itself in my brain as legendary, or maybe Myth and Legend-ary.
Myth and Legend is playing at Te Auaha until Saturday 25th of May. You can find tickets here.