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| August 25, 2019

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David O’Doherty: Seize the David O’Doherty (Carpe O’Diem) - Melbourne International Comedy Festival

David O’Doherty: Seize the David O’Doherty (Carpe O’Diem) – Melbourne International Comedy Festival
Aicha Marhfour

Accents can make anything funny, which is why Dave Hughes and Billy Connolly can always get a crowd giggling even with the most mundane of observations. It helps too, if your lovely Irish brogue is accompanied by a cutting wit and miniature keyboard skills. David O’Doherty’s 2013 MICF show ‘Seize the David O’Doherty’ is chock-full with songs, puns and a surprising number of self-deprecating anecdotes from one of the UK’s most successful comedians on tour.

From the moment the introduction began ringing out over the Forum Theatre (a large plush venue with allocated seating, for those playing along at home), the crowd was O’Doherty’s for the taking. ‘Seize the David O’Doherty’ is meant to be a life-affirming hour where he aims to fix the world. If anything, O’Doherty proves that he doesn’t even need to provide genuine solutions—he does a lot of good just rolling around the world generating belly laughs. Like Patch Adams if he were actually funny (and Irish, and not a doctor).

O’Doherty’s trademark is the rollicking good show that is a little unstructured and flits between topics. Here he is as disorganised as ever, but it’s why we’ve come to love him: The man can make a good joke out of anything. Or a silly song with good jokes which is just as great. If you don’t believe me, consider one of the show’s final pieces: a song about a man wanking on a bike. If you can construct one joke that doesn’t require an obvious rhyme, like ‘banking,’ then I suggest you close this page and get to the Edinburgh Fringe, stat. Comic geniuses are in short supply; they’ll be needing you this year.

‘Seize the David O’Doherty’ is naturally meant to be a show all about positive thinking and bouncing back after a relationship breakup and depression.

While it is very much so a peppy affair, it largely really ends up being about how great he is.

Not in the content itself (typically, O’Doherty is caustic about his own self and inability to attract the opposite sex: “People see me and think: Wow, Chris O’Dowd has let himself go!” he says at one point, rather incorrectly), but the overall Carpe O’Diem experience reveals just how funny, interesting and amusing he is.

Rapid-fire jokes sent a delighted audience into raptures, and I believe I did not stop laughing until the very end when I had to run to catch a train. Emergency pulls on my drink were necessary to ensure that I made it out of there alive, but there certainly are worse ways to die. A bit of CPR from one of the funniest comedians on tour today truly would be the Kiss of Life.

‘Seize the David O’Doherty,’ proves that David O’Doherty is getting better and better with every year that passes.

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