Sam Campbell @ Brisbane Comedy Festival 2016 Review

  • Written by  Peter Thrupp
  • Friday, 04 March 2016 10:37
From the moment I walked into the Graffiti Room at the Brisbane Powerhouse (2 March) and saw a strangely breasted alien on the screen asking me what my favourite kitchen utensil was, I could tell this was not going to be your normal stand-up show.

One struggles to even describe what happened during Sam Campbell's debut show at the Brisbane Comedy Festival, 'Cambo's On Top'. A combination of the absurd and the visceral, with a good dose of just plain silly, 'Cambo's On Top' is an absolute mess of a show. A beautiful, enjoyable mess held together by the seams with quick-witted humour, multimedia and great audience interaction.

Campbell is clearly operating in the tradition of the weirder side of comedy, taking inspiration from Sam Simmons and The Mighty Boosh. Campbell takes the audience on a bizarre, almost ADHD-like tangents with the most wonderfully ridiculous characters imaginable including: an escape artist with a clearly ad-libbed fake French name and a tribute to an esteemed Australian novelist and short-story writer.

Though clearly not as organised and as well-orchestrated as other shows, the slap-dash nature only adds to Campbell's charm and gives the room a sense of danger and vitality. Even during a technical malfunction of a Power-Point presentation, Campbell keeps the laughs flowing and refusing to let it get the better of him.

Closing with a hilarious montage of celebrities and singers in a musical number, along with Campbell himself screaming at the audience to leave the show after it had finished, I left the venue with tears of laughter in my eyes and my ribs hurting.

Sam Campbell is truly a unique talent who keeps the energy and pace of a room under masterful control, despite his best efforts to appear as inept as possible.

For people who like a healthy dose of the weird, quirky and eccentric in their comedy, Sam Campbell's 'Cambo's On Top' is a sure thing.

'Cambo's On Top' runs until Sunday 6 March as part of the Brisbane Comedy Festival.
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