Rhys Darby’s Mystic Time Bird landed in Auckland this weekend as part of an extensive 22-gig comedy tour around Aotearoa.
First up was Bill Napier, Head Ranger of Pohutukawa Park, who was moonlighting as security in order to perform some necessary housekeeping and was utterly hilarious. This has to be the strongest performance I’ve seen from Napier so maybe it’s time to hang up his Ranger’s hat and go into comedy full-time?
Next on the ASB Theatre’s vast stage was the opening act, and fellow Kiwi comic, Jamie Bowen. This multi-award nominated comic delivered his material with a poetic rhythm as he regaled us with sublime yet thoughtful jokes. He was more than aware that the crowd had paid to see Darby so he was playfully and cleverly self-deprecating, critiquing his own career and style of comedy.
Then it was time for the main event, the Mystic Time Bird himself Mr Rhys Darby. With twenty odd years of stand up under his belt, Darby is at ease on stage; this is his home. You can expect all your favourite Darbyisms in this show: clever observations, energetic and physical delivery and some brilliant sound effects, however, there’s deeper level too. This show has a spiritual vibe with its reflections on 2016 (unanimously agreed to be a bit of a shit year), life, loves and loss.
It’s always nice to get to know a comedian on a personal level during their stint on stage, and Darby does this well. In this show he is open, anecdotal and humble which is especially touching when talking about his late mother, honouring her influence on his life and career. He cleverly weaves his material together often bringing previous observations back into the fold.
Mystic Time Bird is a delightfully funny flight into the surreal mind of Mr Darby.
Check out all the dates for the tour at rhysdarby.com.