I’m a pretty simple dude; I still reckon Puma Suedes are the greatest shoes ever invented, nothing beats a proper espresso, and a bloke or blokette on a stage armed with nothing more than a microphone to twirl, and a mic stand to casually shove to the side, is still the purest form of comedy. It’s easy – oh so very easy – to mess up simplicity, and in the case of stand-up it’s when old mate in the lights hasn’t got the stones to match the occasion. Doesn’t matter how good your material is, if you’re delivering it like a sixth-grade offie with a busted shoulder and a pack-a-day habit, chances are you’re going to be back out at deep cover after a few overs.
Zach Watson has charisma and presence, he’s rather capable of holding court and talking codshit with anyone, and it’s pretty amusing to boot. I’m a sucker for a bit of reprehensible language and dick jokes – when they’re being delivered with some easy chutzpah I can’t help but enjoy myself – and when the jokes fell flat Zach drew on his natural stage presence to power though, punctuated by the occasional fortifying slug of gin. This meant it was all a bit disjointed, jumping from topic to topic and in-and-out of theme, which is a bit of a gripe of mine – some of the off-topic stuff could have been reworked to better fit the main flesh of the show.
This resulted in it all losing a bit of steam around the midway point, which after a raucous opening somewhat dulled the overall mood, and the staccato ending, whilst amusing in parts, seemed at odds with the first twenty minutes. It’s hard to maintain a consistent pace in this situation, but after a few run-throughs I daresay the flow will improve.
This sort of show – unrefined, intimate, a bit clever, a little juvenile – isn’t necessarily for everyone, but the authenticity of the situation, carried on the back of someone who’s genuinely comfortable being on stage and who’s very adept at being Johnny-on-the-spot gets a solid tip of the propeller beanie from me.
The Zachelor runs at Rhino Room until the 23rd February. Tickets can be purchased here.