The Anti-Experts Guide To The Pandemic

The Anti Experts Guide To The Pandemic Adelaide Fringe 2021★★★

The and The Shovel. The Viago, Gluttony, Rymill Park. 20 Feb 2021


The dynamic duo is back in Adelaide for their second anti-experts-themed review of the year’s shenanigans. James Schloeffel heads up which is a very funny satirical fake news site. If you only have a minute, just read the headlines, but delve into the text when you can. Charles Firth is a co-founder of The Chaser (CNNNN, War on Everything) and was an executive producer of ABC’s axed satirical news show, The Roast. He currently has a host of news-related comedy projects.


The format is the same - their dialogue is prompted by slides illustrating their points with graphs, Twitter twattle, and photoshopped funny faces of politicians and influencers we love to hate. I hoped they had at least finished writing their show when I saw that they hadn’t finished dressing – appearing in white shirts and jackets with boxer shorts and thongs. More on that later.


The first theme, naturally, was the virus. They sold out last year filling every seat, so filling only every second seat thanks to COVID is simply cruel. There are some funny theories about the virus. Pete Evans’s Instagram and Facebook accounts have been removed for repeatedly sharing debunked claims, and his useless Biocharger got a good bucketing. The virus is having a big effect on Madonna but that’s because she wears her mask over her eye instead of her mouth. Firth was so upset at Treasurer Josh for misplacing $60 billion dollars in COVID relief funding that he yelled our ears off.


The second segment was on conspiracies. I never heard about online furniture ads having a subtext of selling children but I try not to hear these things - it’s their job to find them. And QAnon is closer to the PM than you think. But so it a rape scandal, which wasn’t mentioned because the show is older than one week.


The last segment on ScoMo was best of all. They focused on his incessant media campaign about his everyday self, which seems like a never-ending photo opportunity. Firth did some research to uncover an army of media consultants. And the picture of him working from home, gosh, the guys dressed just like him.


The international content promised in the ad pictures is absent – not a bo-peep about Trump - and the list of topics was quite different than advertised. While the guys are certainly thorough and sharp-tongued no matter what the subject, the format is tired. The mock-up of the Biocharger is not enough in the prop department. More show and less tell.


David Grybowski


When: 19 Feb to 7 Mar

Where: The Virago, Gluttony