Aidan Killian: Whistleblowers

Let’s get something straight here. Aidan Killian is a conspiracy theorist. An intelligent one who makes reasoned arguments about our current geopolitical state of things, through the medium of comedy. He is by no means an anti-vaccer. [Scratch that: apparently he is —Ed.]

The premise of Killian’s show Whistleblowers is an admirable one. He wants us, a beer-sozzled crowd sweltering away in one of the upper rooms of the Austral Hotel, to think about the media and state persecution of infamous whistleblowers such as Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden.

That he manages to get an audience laughing about such an extremely serious topic, act as his own sound technician, and weave a slew of dick jokes into his set is no mean feat.

However, the show needs to be streamlined and refined, something that will of course happen the more it is performed.

There are some prolonged extended anecdotes throughout the show wherein Killian re-enacts imagined conversations between different world figures, with varying degrees of success. His Chelsea Manning section feels a little clumsy, whereas his impression of the Russian bare-back riding leader Vladimir Putin is extremely funny.

Killian is at his most winning, actually, with the off-the-cuff remarks he makes about strange things he encounters in his own life. A joke he makes regarding public urination in the US has the crowd laughing uproariously. A stray observation that the small, red, not very well ventilated room we are ensconced in feels like a former brothel, also lands.

There is a sense that Killian really does care and is willing to put his money where his mouth is; he hands out postcards to audience members so that they can write to Chelsea Manning at the maximum-security military prison she is serving a 35-year sentence in for her disclosure of US military documents.

Whistleblowers is a promising show, and just the thing to see if you are a fan of freedom of speech as well as inventive penis euphemisms.

★★★½

Whistleblowers will be running until February 27 at the Austral Hotel.