It’s becoming more and more difficult to continue describing certain pieces of entertainment as having a cult-audience.
While initially having small audiences, DVD sales and streaming services have shown that TV shows are more than likely to significantly achieve when they aren’t being broadcast on traditional broadcasters.
Still being described as a cult concern is the British comedy series ‘Black Books’, the number of people crowded in the lobby of the QPAC quoting lines from the show as they wait to see its star and creator proves television executives couldn’t predict the mass appeal of Dylan Moran.
Entering the stage without the swagger many comedians performing in larger venues tend to, Moran began the evening with a microphone in one hand and nursing a wine in the other.
Moran opened by disparaging other Australian cities and our current government – a routine that has been and is done by every comedian visiting our shores that it has gotten to the point of being overdone. It may have been a disappointing start for me personally; this opening did achieve its purpose of making audiences comfortable by being able to infuse an Australian locality to his comedic style. This is the only negative that can be levelled at Moran; as soon as he launched into his material he showed why he is revered by comedy fans.
The theme of Moran’s latest show appears to be about him finding his place in the scheme of things: with the first half relating to his place on a global level, and the second within his own family. Being Moran, this theme is analysed at a humorously misanthropic level, with dazzling displays of wordplay being thrown in.
The turns of phrase, metaphor, imagery and word combinations that Moran applies in his delivery are masterful and surreal, with the pretension that surrealism can add to a performer’s words being stripped by the pessimism Moran exudes - a particular favourite being his description of trousers being “bourgeois tubes”.
While words are good and all, there is more to crafting a tale than just that. Moran clearly understands this as he weaves tangents together to become a whole without feeling disjointed. One can’t help but wonder how he connected his self-consciousness about weight gain to why every office needs a breast attached to the wall.
The stream-of-consciousness delivery heightens the humour in his delivery, especially when Moran throws in critiques of modern art hipsters.
Moran finishes with a quick jab at the ‘Fifty Shades’ franchise. Rather than pointing out what is wrong with the series, Moran has put his money where his mouth is by reading out his own attempt at erotica. Moran’s attempt is about the same level of saucy as the material he is satirising, but his way with words and insane come-ons makes it much more appealing.
This, along with the rest of the show, will enter into the lexicon of his quotes that are already shared by the masses that are his fans.