Jeremy Elwood opens the show with a low energy that must be contagious backstage. The energy of the acts is the major disappointment for the night, as it lets down some great comedy. Elwood gives the audience a political set, which gains a lot of laughs, but it does also feel a bit easy with Brexit and Trump having now reached cliché punchline status. Cori Gonzalez-Macuer of What We Do in the Shadows is perhaps a little more self-aware, as he refers to a reviewer from his past that commented on his lack of energy. I truly wish I could disagree with them. Fortunately, the second half of the show does step up in this department, with Rhian Wood-Hill delivering a riot of a bit about his Nana’s bluetooth cochlear implant, and Justine Smith providing a strong end to the show with the biggest energy of the night.
One thing that I must commend is the incredible range of comedic style that comes out of this line-up. A line-up show tends to imply stand-up comedy, but Brynley Stent changes things up with her sketch-based comedy. Her not-safe-for-work self-serve checkout sketch is an absurd yet relatable (to begin with at least) piece, and it refreshes the audience, keeping up the pace of the show as a whole. Gonzalez-Macuer follows suit with a dig at improv, and the shifting comedic forms are a real strength of the show. This paves the way for the second half to be solely stand-up, and it especially supports Raybon Kan’s set, which while good, is not the most cohesive in its coverage of everything from his Chinese roots to his gripes about millennials and windscreen molesters.
The Good Guys: the Goodest Show in Town was a sold out, one-night-only event. For more information about Spinning Top, or to donate to the charity, visit their website. Visit the NZ International Comedy Fest website to book tickets for the festival’s final week.