Rose Matafeo's Horndog, the follow up to last year's widely acclaimed Sassy Best Friend, is a high energy hour of jokes and stories.

Despite only being in her mid-20s, Matafeo has been in the comedy game for a decade already, and was last year named as a comedian to watch by the Guardian.

Matafeo's charm is evidenced by the fact that, despite her acclaim, international success and obvious drive, she wholly manages to convince the audience to buy into the idea she's still the same 12-year-old dork who brought a leather briefcase to school every day and couldn't figure out why boys didn't like her.

As one half of the podcast Boners of the Heart, which Matafeo hosts with fellow Auckland comedian Alice Snedden, Horndog is similarly conversational in tone.


Rather than a co-host, Matafeo communes with the audience, often pausing to ask facetious questions or check whether we're on board with a joke, becoming self-deprecating if she senses we're not - or maybe it's just a bit.

True to an underlying theme of obsessive commitment (which Matafeo describes as a kind of non-sexual horniness, a channeling of confused teenage horniness into distinctly platonic pursuits), Matafeo operates at full energy for the entire hour.

It's not uncommon for a joke to end with the 26-year-old essentially shouting a punch line at the audience, but the over-the-top delivery feels earned rather than obnoxious, because she's such an engaging performer.

Matafeo canvases her various obsessions at different times in her life with movies, craft, the internet, love and, in a very funny bit near the end of the show, music and in particular Michael Jackson.

Tickets for her remaining two Basement show are nearly sold out, so get in quick if you want to see one of New Zealand's best talents.

Who: Rose Matafeo
Where: Basement Theatre, Auckland until Saturday; Te Auaha, Wellington May 8 - 12; Rangatira at Q Theatre, Auckland, May 15