Wil Anderson is significantly better than Madonna – cheaper, more value for money, and starting at 8:47pm, he had a much happier audience. Coming off his two shows from last year, including ‘Political Wil’, and with a constant tendency for political material, Wil was bemoaning the downfall of the greatest gift to comedy Australia’s ever had – Tony Abbott. I’m a bit confused by the absence of Wil’s trademark beers, but he kicked on just fine without them (I’m always a little entertained as he gets progressively drunker throughout a show).
‘Fire at Wil’ is an interesting wander through Anderson’s thoughts and opinions of current affairs – racism, public holidays, politicians, the monarchy, football statistics (he really knows football statistics), and a beautiful, beautiful rundown of why humans being at the top of the food chain just isn’t a thing.
There’s an amount of Wil’s stage presence that can be a bit overwhelming – he has a tendency to get on aggressive tangents and continuously shout ‘what. the. F*CK’ repeatedly. It’s kind of funny at first but after a while it takes up a lot of time that I would love to be filled with more content about the life expectancy of the Queen.
Wil has his target audience and he knows them well – Andrew Bolt empathisers are not likely to find a lot of laughs (do Andrew Bolt empathisers laugh? Is that a thing they’re capable of?).
‘Fire at Wil’ is a great exploration of Australia and its society through laughter– although some of the laughs seem to have written themselves…Reclaim Australia isn’t just an indepth comedy improv troupe, unfortunately. But Wil Anderson continues to be great, with whip-fast wit and great delivery, and I’m still amazed that he manages to keep exceeding my expectations every year and leave me shaking silently from laughter at sometimes the most simplistic of punchlines – sometimes for days afterwards.
Jasmin Ashton is a PR whiz and freelance writer/designer from Melbourne who has a lot of feelings about pretty much everything. Find her at @Jasmanna.
‘Fire at Wil‘ runs from 24 March to 17 April. The Comedy Theatre is wheelchair accessible
Check out our guide to the Melbourne International Comedy Festival for more great shows.