By Jessica Taurins
If this was to be a single sentence review, it would read “DeAnne Smith can only be described as a hilariously relatable and easily distractible weird little guy, 5/5 stars”. But… my editor wouldn’t like that, so let me add a few more sentences.
As an international star, Smith hasn’t visited the Melbourne International Comedy Festival since prior to the dreaded Covid Years, and they have a lot to talk about. Some of it happened in the last few years and some of it happened long ago, but it all comes out in their current show ‘Nipless’ – more on that at the end.
Smith admits early on to having ADHD, if it wasn’t already obviously from how distracted they are by funny laughs in the audience, or really any sort of out of the ordinary sound. This is relatable element number one of their show. Their brain runs at full speed and then some, they have the audiovisual person keep them on track so they don’t chat with the crowd for too long, and they keep dedicated notes so they can remind themselves later which stories were hits (all of them, the answer is all of them).
Truthfully though, they open themselves to being sidetracked. Their show is 80% scripted and 20% fun with the crowd, and luckily they are wonderful at running with the random suggestions that come from an audience. From this particular weekend show they determined, with audience assistance, that they will be replacing their nipples (removed during top surgery some time ago) with three tattoos of chipmunks dressed in cute little outfits.
As for the scripted portion of the show, the stories they tell are somehow wildly unrelatable (I myself have never been yelled at by a French clown), yet so personal at the same time (somehow I feel as though my life is like being yelled at by a French clown). Smith’s anecdotes about their relationships – failed or otherwise – are endearing and wilfully self-deprecating, which only makes the audience love them all the more.
Smith uses their experiences to hand out relationship advice to the crowd that’s better than any therapy session in the world, and with far more pictures of their self-titled ‘sick rack’ than my therapist has ever shared with me. Nudity aside, Smith brings maturity and self-awareness to their show, along with a little dose of childishness, which all comes together as a delightfully well-rounded performance.
To finish: DeAnne Smith can only be described as a hilariously relatable and easily distractible weird little guy, 5/5 stars.