Towards the end of his latest solo show “Unacceptable”, writer/comedian Neal Brennan succinctly — and accurately — described it in one word: “traumedy”.
Brennan’s 90-minute show is an uproarious, yet quite deep, examination of his 48 years on this earth, and the issues and concerns that make up this alchemy of insecurity and pointed humour.
His guide is a three-dimensional wall art work that was created by an artist friend of his that he calls his “areas of dissatisfaction”. Although at first glance it looks like a toddler’s playset, he uses this piece of artwork to great effect throughout the show.
Brennan shares with the audience such topics as Kanye West, the relationship between dogs and humans, liberals, guns, transgender issues, weed, babies and atheism. He just doesn’t tell jokes, but punctuates them with acting out, wild gestures, and even facial expressions that spoke volumes.
He even offers proposals on how certain hot button issues can be dealt with; for example, his ideas of having the FDA test booze as of it was a drug, or an annual TV face-off between a right-wing organization and the U.S. military were two instances that really resonated with the audience.
“Unacceptable” is an intensely funny portrait of how an individual who dealt with many traumas in his life can use comedy to boldly face them, so that he can understand better what his alchemy really is through laughter and deeply personal sharing.
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