Review by Grace Chua
Jimmy McGhie returns to New Zealand once again from the UK to give Kiwis a comedy show on what he terms the “Quality of Life”. He shares his observations from living in London, contrasting it to the comparably blissful (and empty) existence that we enjoy in New Zealand. A good comedian plays to their audience, a great one is able to work your experiences into a more universal narrative. Jimmy is one of those good comedians. Very good in fact, and it’s always nice to reflect on how lucky we are to not have to have to hit the same neighbourhood gym with 200,000 other people or having the time to wait for a coffee longer than 20 minutes.
McGhie is a mainstay on the British comedy circuit and in watching him you will quickly appreciate how seamless his story weaving abilities are, not to mention the ease in which he is able to work the crowd and get them on his side early in his show.
He seemed to enjoy making scoffing remarks at the expense of the largely millennial crowd occupying The Classic that night, you know the kind – the sort who click their fingers in agreement rather than clap. Jimmy had the audience roaring with laughter as sardonically poured cold water on the latest millennial fads. And yet shares the excitement of dating difficult millennial women. Must be a masochist.
It’s not all but for us under thirties though, Jimmy makes an attempt to make those of us who can’t afford to buy a house feel mildly better about buying that smashed avocado toast instead of saving for a deposit. For one, he still lives in his sister’s attic at the age of 38. Not the best scenario from bringing dates home.
Throughout the night Jimmy’s observational self-depreciation also sees us sharing in his woes of being a single man in his late thirties and putting up with painful tinder encounters while his friends are all married with kids. He also gives a brief glimpse into his childhood on how parental styles have definitely differed over the years. Millennial style versus old school style. He playfully mocks how attentive his friends are towards their children at parties whereas his parents would have been far more interested in the liquor cabinet – the kids can entertain themselves.
It’s hard not to recommend Jimmy McGhie. His style is accessible, his material relatable, and he’s just so damn charming. That said, I’d particularly encourage those of us insecure millennials who feel like there’s this pressure to be successful or has that need to buy a house, to attend this show, there’s something very raw and realistic about Jimmy which makes you feel empathetic but laugh at his situation no matter what age group you’re in. His ability to make you ponder on the quality of life as being rather relative but at the same time equalling out in most measures makes his comedy all the more appealing.
Jimmy McGhie is absolutely hilarious. While plenty of comedians lean on self-depreciation, McGhie has turned this into an art. Check him out while you still can!
Who: Jimmy McGhie
When: 20-25 May
Where: The Classic