Comedy review: Guy Montgomery, Let's All Get In A Room Together

By Jordan Bond

Guy Montgomery: "intoxicating, enveloping and absurdly entertaining."
Guy Montgomery: "intoxicating, enveloping and absurdly entertaining."

Guy Montgomery has a history of taking normal experiences - say, watching a movie - and stretching and contorting them until they're rendered unrecognisable - say, watching the same movie every week for a year, and then doing it again with a different movie, and then doing it all over again.

It's a laborious sentence to read, let alone carry out, but Montgomery's done this for three years. It's a lot of time to mull the peculiarities of the world and societal inanities, and more than enough time to develop some sort of derangement.

The 2014 Billy T Award winner's new stand up hour, Let's All Get In A Room Together, is a combination of irreverent, observational anecdotes, taken to ridiculous extremes.

Montgomery moves through his raft of elaborate, overwrought tales with a laboured ease. It's an unusual contradiction; he plays up his highly strung, frenetic on-stage persona - bursting to get through his stories - but is deeply comfortable on stage.

He truncates certain lines with fantastic timing, either feigning personal embarrassment at the revelation or excitedly and intentionally tripping over his heels and rushing onwards. Yet other times, he'll run off on a minutes-long tangent, before tempering his own excitement at the end of a frenzied rattle with a muted, 'nah, but it's cool'.

One risk you take with rambling, anecdotal comedy is arriving at the punchline with a hit that doesn't live up to the jokes built along the way. Montgomery, despite weaving his way through long segments, doesn't lose sight of his destination. His punchlines are pointed, save for a couple of segments, which fade.

Montgomery makes himself easy to like and easy to laugh with. He's one of just a handful of Kiwi comedians who really just has it - intoxicating, enveloping and absurdly entertaining.

He's properly funny, by international standards. We're lucky to have him share his runaway, peculiar mind with us, together, in a room.

LOWDOWN:
Who: Guy Montgomery
Where: Basement Theatre
When: Until May 13

- NZ Herald

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