Nick Sun: Blood On The Yolks In The Key Of Owls
Show type: Melbourne 2006
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Despite his victory in the 2004 So You Think You’re Funny new act competition, Nick Sun is not a comic with a great deal of confidence in his own ability.
Time and time again in his debut show does he sabotage his routine with self-doubt. Whenever he builds up some head of momentum, he brings it crashing to a halt by criticising his material, his delivery or the dynamic of his tiny room. It’s very frustrating.
Of course, he’s aware of the effects such insecure overanalysis has on the dynamic of the set – he can’t help but mention that, too – but it would be more helpful to combat it, rather than draw more attention to it.
After all, he cares more about these things than the audience, who in an hour-long festival show are prepared to cut the performer a little slack so they can hear what he has to say. And when he does allow himself to get going, Sun can shine.
He’s formed opinions on everything from laddish clubbing culture to the vacuity of much conversation and from death and terrorism to the aggressive sexuality of the Pussycat Dolls. There’s often a need for stronger punchlines or more jokes, but Sun is more interesting than he believes himself to be.
Typical of the unnecessary knots he ties himself into is his segment on his ethnicity. It’s clear he doesn’t feel defined by it, or indeed find it any big deal, yet feels compelled to discuss it. So we end up with a lot of time spent talking about why he doesn’t want to talk about it.
Insecurity has been used as a powerful comedy tool from Woody Allen onwards, but at the moment Sun too often lets it get the better of him, rather than harnessing it for his own ends. This 24-year-old Sydneysider still has a lot of promise, if only he could find the confidence to realise it.
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett