Not to be confused with Not Without My Daughter, comedy circuit veteran James De Leo’s latest show, Not Without My Porter, is primarily about etiquette. Currently showing at the Alley Bar in ACDC Lane, ABC regular and satirist extraordinaire James De Leo delivers a punchy, intellectually-stimulating routine that brings the audience back to a time when people had manners. If you’ve ev
James De Leo - Not Without My Porter: Melbourne International Comedy Festival
Don’t be deceived: this show has nothing to do with porters (except for, perhaps, a very obscure association). Nor does this show have anything to do with a Hollywood blockbuster movie bearing a similar name. Nor does this show have anything to do with the smuggling of children out of Iran as depicted in the aforementioned Hollywood Blockbuster. But there is a slight possibility that this show does have something to do with Sally Field...perhaps.
Not to be confused with Not Without My Daughter, comedy circuit veteran James De Leo’s latest show, Not Without My Porter, is primarily about etiquette. Currently showing at the Alley Bar in ACDC Lane, ABC regular and satirist extraordinaire James De Leo delivers a punchy, intellectually-stimulating routine that brings the audience back to a time when people had manners. If you’ve ever wondered how to translate bogan-speak into Latin, then De Leo will provide clear insight into the deeply complex world of bogan etiquette. Hailing from the cashed-up bogan town of Perth, De Leo has intricate knowledge of the proper social norms one should adhere to. When asking someone out on a date, for example, be sure to consult De Leo’s dating tips to determine whether it is socially acceptable to chat someone up on Facebook. Similarly, De Leo’s cooking/dressing tips are highly recommended to ensure that when one makes a fashion statement, it is not just powerful but also packed with protein. In what can only be described as an educational experience, De Leo expertly steers the audience through the etiquette faux pas minefield in a clever show that combines bogan-bashing with just the right level of self-deprecation.
James De Leo’s deadpan delivery is perfectly suited to his dry, ironic humour. Oft-touted phrases in the comedy-world such as ‘razor sharp wit’ and ‘deliciously dry’ are automatically attributed to De Leo. He drifts seamlessly from impersonation to video interludes, to analysing pictorial representations with the effortless style of a true comedy guru. De Leo’s light-hearted, low-key delivery compliments his subtle humour perfectly and makes the show’s 45 minutes seemingly fly by.
However one mind-boggling aspect of the show was the comparative scantness of clientele. Perhaps it was the competition of other Friday night attractions, or the creepiness of ACDC Lane deterred drop-ins, but when a name like De Leo comes to town surely the crowds should be flocking to the show. Although the cramped forum of the Alley Bar theatre was slightly claustrophobic and the display of the projector on a screen sideways-on from the audience was a work-out on the neck muscles, De Leo nonetheless maintained a professional approach regardless of the less-than-perfect surroundings.
The journey from bogan to upper-class bogette (or vice versa) starts with a visit to James De Leo’s intelligent and highly informative one man show. Not Without My Porter is compulsory viewing for all those who aspire to life beyond the trailer park, so be sure to grab a bumper sticker and other James De Leo paraphernalia on the way out.
James De Leo – Not Without My Porter: Melbourne International Comedy Festival
Venue: The Alley Bar, ACDC Lane (off Flinders Lane)
When: Tue-Sun 7pm
Duration: 45 mins
Prices: Full $20, Conc, Group (3 or more), Preview, Laugh Pack & Tightarse Tuesday $16