David Trent: Digital era comedy

For those of you who are unfamiliar with David Trent, what we have here is comedy written and designed for the modern era.

Clicker in hand, David Trent goes through his virtual gig. Photo: Diamond Geyser (via Flickr)

One of his first jokes was about how the comedy was brought to the audience by a ‘grand and a half’ worth of computer equipment and it’s a job he had it, because without it, I can’t see his material being good enough to hold an audience.

His act was a very good example of what you can do with an enquiring mind and google.

David’s act included his interpretation of Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines, which, in my opinion was the strongest part of his act.

Everybody who has heard that song knows it is layered with misogyny and sexism but, David picked the song apart in a very funny way.

The advantages of a set created by the use of digital technology are that you always know something is coming next. You know that the comedian is always building up to something.

In that sense I liked David’s show. It’s a very novel idea of performing a stand-up show, and it takes a skilled comedian to make what he finds on the internet funny. I accept that notion and respect him for it.

However, and this is a big however. Is this stand-up comedy?

Is it worthy of being judged beside the likes of Rhod Gilbert or some of the great older comedians of Billy Connolly?

In my opinion, no.

Using a projector and a laptop and building a routine around the internet is an interesting idea but it shouldn’t catch on.

For an intermit audience, the show works but for an audience any bigger than 60, it wouldn’t work.

Another restricting feature about David’s set, sometimes the technology won’t work and for about 3 minutes, we were left in an awkward silence, while David mumbled about a PowerPoint presentation.

Also, the comedian is unable to go off on tangents.

I remember watching a Peter Kay documentary and he said: “No show is the same.”

But for this comedy, every gig will be almost the same. The same jokes, the same slides, the same gig. A decent watch and a good festival show but hopefully this type of show will not go mainstream.

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