Live at the Moth Club Review – it can’t decide if it’s a mockumentary, a sitcom or a stand-up sketch show consequently if fails on all three fronts.
It starts life in true mockumentary style with Ellen (Lucia Keskin) explaining to camera that she is the talent booker and then talking to said talent in the ‘green room’ which, like those in many small venues, has all the verve of a dentist’s waiting room. It certainly doesn’t have the relative glamour of Backstage With Katherine Ryan. Despite Keskin’s performance, it is now virtually impossible not to compare any lead in a mockumentary with Ricky Gervais’ David Brent.
Following interviews with doorman, Jackpot (Arnab Chandra) club owner George Lambert (Mark Heap) and incompetent bar manager Denzil Platt (Kiell Smith-Bynoe), William Stone introduce the acts to the stage: John Pointing, Kemah Bob and Sam Cambell who deliver competent yet unremarkable sets – not the best samples of their undoubted talents.
Meanwhile the documentary style slips away as Zebedee (Natasia Demetriou) and Cress (Ellie White) the club’s unlikely PR team go into sketch mode delivering a poor script culminating later in Pythonesque silliness.
Intercut with this is Jamie Demetriou as City Boy, a drunken audience member, who is not too much of a stretch from Stath; Dustin Demri-Burns and Seb Cardinal as a failed comedy double act turned would be film directors – a film we later see completely out of context.
Phil Wang, takes to the stage with a script written by Freddie the sound guy (Freddie Meredith), because he can’t deliver his planned routine due to his contractual obligations with DuluxTV, who should sponsor the show because much of it is as interesting as watching their magnolia emulsion dry. The hastily written set bombs and, unfortunately, we don’t get to see a true Wang routine.
The concept of a mockumentary in a comedy club is full of comedic opportunity but his show suffers from what is now called Dissociative identity disorder (multiple personality disorder in old money): it needs to decide which genre of show it is. Although it could get away with being all three, if it just produced much, much better scripts.