At the beginning of Josh Thomas’ new stand up show Whoopsie Daisy, the Australian comedian leans into the mic, takes a pause, and says “the problem with not dying is that you have to live”. Over the course of the next 75 minutes, Thomas humorously describes the many reasons why living might be a problem for him, from his romantic misadventures in Hollywood to his adult diagnosis with ADHD and subsequent need to develop social skills, as well as his mother’s mental health issues and his attempts to deal with them. I was able to catch one of four sold-out performances in Boston, and the packed house thoroughly enjoyed the show. Anyone familiar with Thomas’ television shows Please Like Me and Everything’s Gonna Be Okay knows and loves Thomas’ comedic style and physicality, and both are on full display during his stand up. Whoopsie Daisy is a worthy return to the world of stand up comedy after a six year absence for Thomas and is a hilarious complement to his television work.
Thomas is a master of taking an audience to the edge of darkness (and sometimes right over the edge) while still leaving room for comedy. Thomas’ appeal hinges on the audience’s willingness to follow him to dark places and trust that the scenarios presented, while not always funny initially, will eventually pay off. There is often hilarity in even the darkest of times, and Thomas knows that there is a fine line between tragedy and comedy. One particularly memorable bit starts in a dark place, with Thomas buying MDMA from a dealer in the bathroom at a club after a request from his mother. Just when the audience was sitting in near silence, wondering how this could possibly be funny, Thomas launched into an extended musical number from Les Miserables that caused the audience to cry with tears of laughter. The ultimate payoff is the explanation of the title Whoopsie Daisy at the end of the show, which re-frames everything the audience has just witnessed and proves just how good Thomas is at taking the audience on a journey with him. It seems effortless, and much like watching a magician, it made me want to know just how the trick was done.
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I’m doing a tiny tour of my live show. It will not look anything like this photo from my Perth show. Tickets on sale now in SEATTLE/ OAKLAND and VANCOUVER. It’s called #WhoopsieDaisy and it’s about how I hate being alone, and then was very alone. I talk a lot about my #ADHD diagnoses and my mum. Also gay sex. Also my dog John. It’s exactly what you’d expect. Link in bio. Photo Credit @jasonmatzphotography
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Whoopsie Daisy is a must-see show for anyone who is a fan of Thomas or who has a darker sense of humor. I personally am hoping the show is adapted into a stand up special, simply because I want to watch it again and again. It’s a great opportunity to see a comedy genius in a more intimate setting before he starts playing arenas in the U.S. (any day now, according to my prediction). Thomas may see living as an exhausting chore filled with awkward encounters and unbearable social situations, but as long as he is making comedy life will always be worth living through for those lucky enough to watch him at work.
Josh Thomas continues his sold-out Whoopsie Daisy tour in Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles. For tickets and more information, check out his website. His first show Please Like Me is available in its entirety on Hulu, and his new series Everything’s Gonna Be Okay is currently airing on Freeform and Hulu. For a taste of Thomas’ comedy, check out the clip below!