<p>You may know Matt Okine from his time as half of Triple J’s Matt & Alex breakfast show, but take it from me, this is the year to sample his stand-up.</p>
You may know Matt Okine from his time as half of Triple J’s Matt & Alex breakfast show, but take it from me, this is the year to sample his stand-up. Matt has brought his show The Hat Game to MICF this year after strong seasons in Adelaide, Brisbane, and Canberra, and it might just be my favourite show of the festival so far.
Matt opens the show quick and strong, showcasing the wholesome observational content that drives his comedy within the first few minutes. Having interviewed him about the show previously, I was keen to see how he would make his early-20s quest for Ghanaian citizenship funny. Needless to say, he did so in impressive fashion. The crowd’s attention never wavered as he weaved his story, which was not only funny, but consistently engrossing. If he’s able to bring this content to a wider audience, I have no doubt that Matt’s career will continue to go from strength to strength.
When his story came to an end, I half-expected the show to end with it. Not so. While I understand the man has a career to promote, which I fully support, my attention did waver during the ten-minute epilogue plugging his show on Stan. Thankfully he did bring it back with some excellent final jokes, but it was a weak point nonetheless.
Perhaps my least-favourite part of The Hat Game was the venue. While Melbourne Town Hall’s Supper Room is sizeable and has good visibility, it’s about as difficult to find as any gig I’ve been to. Make sure you keep a close eye out for MICF signs and don’t just follow the crowd. Expect to go up three floors and through a handful of corridors before you get there. The show itself is lively enough to be half-drunk beforehand, but I’d advise against it purely because of the out-of-the-way spot.
Those gripes aside, I really can’t recommend The Hat Game highly enough. Tickets are reasonably priced and the content is neither offensive nor boringly-safe. All his MICF shows are between 6 and 7pm, so I’d strongly suggest using them as a precursor to a night out. Go to the show with friends, relive it over some cheap jugs, and have a great night.
Go in: Sober enough to find the venue