Comedy reviews: Lou Wall, Bea Barbeau-Scurla, MICF

Gen Z in battle with the World Wide Web (secret weapon: feet) and a reflection on the bonds and secrets of home and family.

Lou Wall vs The Internet

Deliciously unhinged, Lou Wall vs The Internet is the revenge porn fantasy you never knew you needed – until you did… 

Lou Wall, a recipient of the 2023 Moosehead Award, dives headfirst into the dank realms of jealousy in this tight 50-minute performance and details how their generation grew up with the internet. Aside from the whip-smart comedic writing there is a pertinent message to be found here.

Wall’s set commences with a video montage that’s akin to some acid-induced fever dream, with use of multimedia throughout the show incredibly well-designed and executed. 

Certainly, a highlight is their frank discussion of how in lockdown they discovered the lucrative foot fetish market, whereby they sold pictures and videos of their feet for money online. Fair warning: for any peanut butter lovers, you may not be able to look at your favourite spread in the same way, ever again. 

Musically, Wall alternates between bouts of screaming and s**it talking and breaks out in song more than once, to great effect.

A multidimensional show that pushes back against society and the regular tropes used in comedy, Lou Wall vs The Internet is a standout that one would be amiss to miss at this year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival. 

Lou Wall vs The Internet will be performing at the MICF at Melbourne Town Hall until 8 April and ACMI on 9 April 2023. Tickets: $26-$32

Bea Barbeau-Scurla: House

Although I did not know much if anything about this young comic, choosing this show as a wild card certainly paid off. A perfectly executed trauma dump that – for its early time slot – is certainly heavy going but joyous all the same.

Detailing the struggles faced by First Gen Australians growing up in a mixed migrant family, Bea Barbeau-Scurla moves between razor sharp takes on trauma and family, and readings from childhood diary entries. The incorporation of this source material provides good rhythm and a solid structure.

Bea Barbeau-Scurla. Photo: Supplied.

Those who hate audience interaction would do well to sit in the back row, for within minutes of entering the space Barbeau-Scurla draws us in into the conversation, talking about love, first dates and family.

From here the show escalates with breakneck speed. Lines about gay beats and men here exerting their privilege set a wickedly dark tone, because, as Barbeau-Scurla explains, the only time a woman would be seen in a park after dark would be if they were dead, being buried or both.

This comic has played as a support act for a number of higher-profile comics including Tom Gleeson, which explains why a highlight of the set centres upon a framed poster from Gleeson’s gig displayed proudly in her parents’ house. In an ideal world this promising young comic would be the headliner and Gleeson would be the support.

Read: Comedy reviews: Best of Comedy Zone Asia, David O’Doherty, MICF

Bold, audacious, yet heart-warming in equal measure, House proves that BarbeauScurla is a comic whose star is just on the rise. 

Barbeau-Scurla: House will be performing at the MICF at Storyville Melbourne until 9 April 2023. Tickets: $15-$27

Jessi Ryan (they/them) has been creating performance and exhibitions for the past 20 years, both locally, nationally and abroad- in this time collaborating with a huge number of artists from a broad cross section of cultural backgrounds. As a journalist they have written for and been published by some of Australia’s leading arts and news editorial across the last 10 years-and was recognised as a finalist for Globe Community Media Award in 2021. Ryan has also taken photos for a number of print and online publications.