FRINGEWORLD: Infinite Jest Presents: The Nasty Show (4 stars)

Review by Kieran Eaton

The Nasty Show is an assortment of edgy material presented in an accessible way. You know from the title that it not about sugar and spice, and all things nice, MC Jez Watts sets up the premise in a simple manner and gets the audience to think of their own nasty jokes. Anyone can tell a nasty joke – but can everyone get away with it? Watts skillfully demonstrates how to pull off a good nasty joke – this is a masterclass in smut!

The good news is most of the jokes are told with great skill and craft by a variety of stand-up comedians from different backgrounds and experiences. Does this make it a bit hit and miss? Well, to a degree but the stronger acts in this show help to carry the ‘weaker’. However, it does end up becoming a bit of a joke-a-thon competition after a while. What really makes The Nasty Show work though, is a sense of camaraderie from the audience. They truly embrace the concept and the comedians, leaving the tent with a whole bunch of new friends at the end of the night.

The show is on late, so it feels like a setting where the comedians with more beers under their belt can be a bit looser and bolder. This is a fun breakaway from seeing generic “likable” styles. The downside is it does have a laddish feel to it, with all performers being straight male comedians. There is a huge amount of energy in the room which keeps this ad-hoc, guys-will-be-guys vibe going. Once they are on a roll, the comedians can really get nasty!

With about an average of five performers a night, The Nasty Show has someone for every taste, with plenty of variety, you’re bound to find a new favourite comedian. The Nasty Show is a simple format but is sure to fit in well for most comedy/fringe festivals. I recommend this to anybody who likes to walk on the wild side.

The Nasty Show played as part of Perth’s FRINGEWORLD festival in February 2016. Infinite Jest have just finished a run of comedy shows in Adelaide Fringe March 2016. You can catch The Nasty Show during the Perth Comedy Festival 22 April – 15 May. See website for details: