Ladies and gentlemen! Please welcome James Rankin in Be a Man! Says James Rankin. Or something to that effect anyway. A funny way to introduce a great show about his reflections on his own life and journey into manhood. Though sitting awkwardly in the front row, I am immediately hooked.
Smooth, calm and hilarious, James’ eyes twinkle merrily as he tells us about his less-than-manly experiences walking around Rome with his girlfriend. And about the bizarrely ridiculous experiences and expectations of him growing up as a Jehovah’s Witness. And about dating in primary school. And many many other awkward, weird, and wacky scenarios. Though some jokes fell slightly flat, James’ well-structured and cleverly linked series of stories makes for a thoroughly enjoyable show that the audience clearly enjoyed.
James is a rising star in the Melbourne comedy scene and rightly so. He has performed worldwide to develop a well-honed style and awareness of his audience. As his first-ever comedy festival show it really is well done. My favourite part was his description of learning how to lie well from his upbringing. The execution was just perfect. Keep an eye out for it.
It was appropriate that this was held at The Improv Conspiracy, because improvisation seems to be a talent James has, with a few excellent saves when the audience didn’t get it, and hilarious handling of a particularly lively audience member. As one of Melbourne’s up-and coming-comedians, James says he is focusing on comedy, and truly has potential. A pleasure to watch.
Emmanuel Malikides – writes really really funny (well maybe not that funny) problems for computer science courses at Melbourne University. He changes this blurb every time.
Check out our guide to the Melbourne International Comedy Festival for more great shows.