Mel Buttle’s new show, 'Dog Bitch', will make you want to wag your tail and beg for more treats.
It’s always a treat to go and see a home-grown comedian. Not just because it’s great to support local talent, but also because the jokes can resonate that much more.
Mel is well-known – as she charmingly liked to remind us constantly throughout the show – from both her Courier Mail columns and her co-hosting gig on Foxtel’s 'Bake Off' with Maggie Beer. These jobs, while obviously bestowing limitless prestige, do not pay enough to cover the bills and so Mel has to take on a dog walking job. Even though she’s allergic to dogs. Her partner also foists an adopt-or-bad-things-will-happen-to-it foster dog onto her, and so her status as a dog person is complete. This show is all about these adventures.
A 60-minute show all about dogs might be met with a healthy dose of scepticism, but the time flew by for all involved, even the cat people. Mel talking about which dog breeds are most at home in which neighbourhoods was a particular highlight. This is where local knowledge came in – comments about oddle-kaboodle-schnoodle-y things living in Ascot, complete with posh mannerisms, had the audience in stitches. At least, everyone except the group of ladies of a certain age who, it appears, live in said suburb.
It was nice too to see Mel open up a little about her private life, and display a bit more of a raunchy, PG-15+ side that we rarely get to glimpse in her columns. It really connected with the audience. She connected even more directly by heckling all the late comers, many of whom chatted back. One young lady clapped enthusiastically in support of Mel’s dad’s new partner, whom, it is presumed, was about to be the butt of the next set of jokes. It turned out the young lady is in a walking group with Mr Buttle, and so there went that chunk of the show. Brisbane. It’s small.
The relaxed, easy and friendly atmosphere demonstrated that people like her, they like her jokes and they aren’t afraid of Mel Buttle. But perhaps they should be. Especially if, as revealed in one joke, they attempt to haggle over her dog walking price, but for that story you need to pay to go and see the show.