Written and performed by Scout Boxall, directed by Michelle Brasier
Review by Martha “MJ” Latham
Some comedians are born funny, some achieve funny, and some have funniness thrust upon them. Scout Boxall somehow manages to do all three through impressive use of luck, talent and capitalising on their mental illness. This is modern comedy at its finest.
After cramming an audience into a tiny room, Scout appeared on-stage in a bright orange dress covered in sad and happy faces and sporting a bob/mullet crossover. With only themselves, a microphone and a PowerPoint presentation they made the audience laugh and cry in an endless loop for 50 minutes straight.
Scout has an incredible ability to keep the audience in the palm of their hand. Not only because they were engaging, but also because they made you feel safe. The set shifted between 2012 Tumblr text post, golden era vine humour (songs and all) and a very real look at Scout’s personal struggle with bipolar disorder. Despite this, you never felt like you were watching someone bare their soul onstage. Instead, the show felt more like a very real chat with a close friend in your backyard, probably with a piss-weak beer in hand. By the end, I felt like I genuinely knew Scout more than I know some of my colleagues.
Scout led the audience from Arnott’s creams, to suicide, to an unexpected love of Formula 1. I felt blessed to be led along on a one-way conversation with this incredibly charismatic storyteller. Intercut between every frantic tangent was a song or two that kept the audience always guessing at what was coming next. Underneath all of this was a beautiful, yet somehow menacing, sound design. Every piece of this show pounded itself together and was baked into a perfect and deliciously crispy sourdough loaf.
When reviewing comedy, I’ve been mostly at a loss as to where to start. With a background in theatre, I know how to look at narrative, performance, and design with a critical lens. But what makes good comedy? The answer is Scout. Scout Boxall makes good comedy.
Buck Wild played at the Comedy Republic from 30 March – 10 April.
You can follow Scout on Instagram @scoutboxall. Sign up for future shows and Scout’s ongoing Instagram column and soon-to-be-newsletter, Dumb Bitch Advice at scoutboxall.com.