It’s very rare that I come across a new comedian that I like. I’ve liked the same comedians for years and the only recent one who is right up there with the likes of Andy Kaufman, Bill Hicks, Stewart Lee etc is Louis CK.
A few years back I had to review a stack of DVDs for another website and they were mostly all DVDs of Australian comedians so by the time I came around to Jimeoin on Ice I was ready for another shitty “bloke” comedian to bore me for an hour or so. So when he managed to make me love aspects of comedy I hate I was sold that Jimeoin is awesome.
Sure he’s not quite up there amongst Hicks or CK, but Jimeoin takes two elements of comedy I usually hate and makes me laugh: physical and musical comedy. He’s hard not to like because he’s cheeky, he has Irish charm in bucket-loads and he is so effortless in his delivery it really feels like you’re just watching a friend goof off for a while and I suppose that’s why the 10 minutes or so of guitar playing is easy to handle: he’s not trying to be a rock star and he’s basically just goofing around. If you met Jimeoin on the street he’d be the same person as he is on stage.
His style is mostly observational and his topics are never really that topical, existential, heck even intellectual. I get so tired of comedians being intellectual, anti religious or the worst of them all: being political and forcing their views down the audience’s throat. While Jimeoin may leap from topic to topic and not have a theme throughout the show this makes him easier to relate to as he has no agenda apart from making you laugh. He never comes off as preachy, never crosses any lines with the audience and never comes off as a pseudo-intellectual prat.
His enthusiasm for his craft is refreshing. I love seeing him at work as he churns out something new on the spot, egged on by the audience, eyes widening with excitement because of this clever new addition to his piece. So you might ask if he’s not political, he’s not anti-religious, he’s not telling rape jokes what’s left? He talks about his wife a lot and how he loves to wind her up, and how he talks “clean to her” (seductive talking about taking out the trash and leaving her alone); simply put he has a wonderful ability to turn everyday observations to comedy gold. It’s all fairly safe subject matter but he throws the odd un-pc gag out there such as playing a jangly bit of guitar and introducing the song as ‘I’d Rather be a Pedophile than a Racist’ and comparing Maori’s talking at a bar to sounding like a bunch of chickens gobbling. His honesty is also pretty refreshing, especially in the “love song” that he plays, you see it’s not your typical love song written at the moment of meeting your love it’s 10 years later when you can’t stand the sight of each other.
If you’ve seen a bunch of Jimeoin’s DVDs then some of the material will be familiar and might not live up to your expectations but for those who have never seen his stuff before this is the perfect place to start.
There’s a selection of extras which are all excerpts from Australian TV and live performances: The Melbourne Comedy… runs for 4 minutes and is an excerpt from a Jimeoin and Bob’s Cooking Show sketch; Something Smells Funny is a mock perfume advertisement for the show; The Interrogation is a near 3 minute skit; Good News Week is an excerpt from the show where Jimeoin leaves during filming to take a piss and fellow comedian Tim Minchin sings a song about it and finally there’s Comedy Jam (2 minutes) where Jimeoin talks about how band members appear onstage – the funniest extra by far. A nice selection of filler materials, may be more familiar to Australian fans though.
- Melbourne International Comedy Festival Gala 2006
- Something Smells Funny Ad
- The Interrogation
- Good News Week
- Comedy Jam
Available on R4 DVD.