This is not standard political comedy, where politicians are lampooned for ill-thought and highly publicised remarks or generally-disliked policies are picked over in finer detail. This is activism for beginners: learn about a subject, question it and get involved. Through a series of stories about his own and others’ experiences in various instances of activism, Chris Coltrane shows that politics doesn’t have to be boring, and is often quite funny.
He is, unashamedly, a tory-basher, and this would be my one criticism: not enough awareness of alternative viewpoints. But it’s a comedy show, not a political science essay, so it doesn’t matter. He also makes unashamedly political points: in equal parts attempting to entertain and to energise. You might not agree with some of his politics or the methods he supports, and you might even wonder if he is as guilty of selective information provision as the politicians. But he will definitely make you think, and as he points out, at least those stunts got people talking.
Chris is an engaging character, and if politics had more like him, we might be a bit more interested. If the show piques your interest, he’s got a beginner’s factsheet you can have at the end.
Reviewed by Laura
PBH’s Free Fringe @ The Globe
until 25 Aug, 14:15