Jimmy James Eaton’s 2015 Melbourne International Comedy Festival show Jimmy vs Jimmy is about internal conflict, kind of. Along with his usual tie-dyed comedic style of improvisation, sketch and stand up, Eaton uses a bit of multi-media and a lot of beat boxing to craft an approximate hour of things that will make you snort with laughter.
Despite the show’s title and write up, Jimmy vs Jimmy really is only kind of about internal conflict. Eaton has decided to try and be a little more self controlled, and the stand up material in the show relates to why he’s come to this decision. That aside though, there’s a lot of other themes bandied about in a light hearted manner. The show doesn’t need the overhanging central element, and certainly not one so serious. The audience are a little on edge, waiting for some tragically funny heartfelt story about Eaton’s internal conflicts and none comes. This is an hour of ridiculous fun and it doesn’t need to masquerade as anything else.
Eaton’s strengths are improv and sketch. When he uses the latter they are well written, well structured and expertly delivered, tinged with improv to make each moment and each evening a little different. Improvised beats in written shows always delight the crowd. There’s something welcoming and conspiratorial about it; everyone is sharing the same once in a life time experience, this is a moment only this audience will witness.
The stand up is a little scattered, though perhaps it’s just because Eaton’s sketches are so raucously funny. There are a fair few dick jokes and a bit of character work that’s like Babalouie from Quick Draw McGraw and Dad from Brak Show had a child. Eaton’s use of sound and stage is impressive, and if he ever gives up comedy, there’s easily a career in Australian hip hop awaiting him.
Jimmy vs Jimmy is on at 9:15pm at the Imperial Hotel until April 19th. Tickets range from $10 to $15 and are available online or at the door.