COMEDY REVIEW: Tom Walker – ‘Bee Boo’

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I will start by prefacing that I had no idea who Tom Walker was walking into this (no pun intended), and I did not know if I was going to see stand-up comedy or…something else.

Bee Boo certainly was something else – it was quite intense and “in-your-face”, which almost made me regret sitting in the front row. Plus, Walker said he was ill, and while I commend him for doing the show whilst under the weather, I wasn’t keen on being so up close to those germs.

Some people who definitely had regrets were represented by Walker’s own tally of ticket holders who had walked out during the shows in Adelaide and Melbourne, which is why I call him ‘Tom Walk-Out’. At the beginning, I started to wonder whether I would become a statistic myself, except I couldn’t because I was reviewing the show. Once it sank in what I got myself into, I started to relax and enjoy the the surrealist and absurdist comedy. I even got past his dress sense which was if AC/DC’s Angus Young if he got an office job.

Can we call this show Play School for Adults? It seemed as if Tom Walk-Out wrote some ideas on little notes and picked them from a hat at random, and tried to incorporate as many into the show as he could in an hour without any structure. The show was very interactive, and included props, music, improv, self-deprecation, slap-stick.

Several sections of the show was a ‘Dear Diary’ part where he improved a few lines over pre-recorded dialogue that told the audience how Tom felt about the show in its lead up, and during. Another was his interactive game Blink Simulator, where an audience member (lucky me actually) got to make the lights blink whenever I hit the cardboard cut-out ‘blink’ button with a massive tree branch.

The show ended with Tom Walk-Out performing a sex scene with no dialogue. It went on for too long and unsurprisingly went a bit nuts, but was also quite funny and at times even felt true-to-life. Thankfully he left his clothes on.

Tom Walker obviously took risks in creating this show, and it may be a risk buying a ticket too. If you enjoy this bizarre, out-there sort of comedy, you’ll dig this performance. Others may feel uncomfortable with how intense it is. With risk comes reward, so while I personally wouldn’t want to see this kind of show again, great comedy is risky, so give Tom Walk-Out a chance! You can always walk out and become a statistic on his tally if you don’t like it!

Words by Stefan Bradley.

Tom Walker’s Bee Boo is at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival until April 23rd.

Follow Tom Walk-Out on Twitter.