Every year around this time, my nights grow even longer and usually with less whisky involved. Why? Umm.. The NZ International Comedy Festival. Each year, I try and make it to as many shows as possible to let you know what’s funny or just plain ridiculous so you too, can enjoy the Festival.

And it’s already begun! Let me tell you briefly about the show I saw on Saturday: Brendon Green: Eggs and Ham. Look at that, you get a laugh for free just reading the name of the show. I’ve been watching Brendon’s comedy since he debuted at the Festival in 2012 and even slightly before that a time or two. His brand of intellectual but casually off-hand observational comedy will have your cheeks hurting, particularly if you don’t mind a bit of comedy at a funeral. He also brought back the guitar for a little musical interlude. Nicely done. Many laughs had and a nice way to meet the newest venue of the Festival, Montecristo Comedy (basement rooms next to Toto’s).

Here’s the keyword review: intelligent, funerals, not too clean but not too obscene, take your mates, you’ll appreciate the quick wit, cheeks will hurt, there’s a guitar, brand new show!

I’ve just been to see Stuart Bowden, in his show ‘She Was Probably Not A Robot‘ at the Herald Theatre. This theatre is one of my favourite venues in Auckland to see any kind of live performance because it’s so intimate and personal. It should suit a show that has been described as ‘a lo-fi, DIY, off-beat, sci-fi storytelling experience; a surreal, soulful comedy about a decomposing world and a cosmic visitor.’

The plot description of the one-man show goes on to say, “When the world ends in flood and fire, one man, asleep on his air-mattress, floats out of his bedroom window, through burning debris and out to sea to be the sole survivor and last hope for humanity.” Suffice to say, there is an air mattress in the show and it plays a vital role in the physical comedy of this show! I was with a couple of friends tonight, who kindly offered their words!

Sarah said: weird and interactive, and wonderful. Pretty hard to describe actually, a combination of many things that assault your senses, generally in a good way. Kind of heartwarming but also strange.

Arjun said: I liked how it was still very funny but it wasn’t traditional comedy. He was clearly a natural comedian. He didn’t descend into cheap gags and was genuinely there to entertain.

Here’s the keyword review: physical, intimate, human and heartfelt, laugh out loud but not in the usual fashion, air mattress, aerobic, energetic, dynamic, creative, magnetic.

I thought Stuart Bowden’s show was everything I could hope for from a Fringe show – a little bit weird and a little bit lovely. Both shows are playing this week so get out there and have some laughs!

Meanwhile, you can check out everything the Comedy Festival has to offer and book tickets via the website. My advice is get in early, book two shows per night and allow an hour between to march over Auckland. Most shows are doing short runs, with the big names sometimes only doing one or two. So be quick and get in now!