Nish Kumar: Long Word...Long Word...Blah Blah Blah...I'm So Clever

comedy review | Read in About 2 minutes
Published 15 Aug 2015

"If this goes wrong, I've wasted my whole life," cautions Nish Kumar by way of introduction. Luckily for him, that turns out to be nothing more than tentative humility, as he embarks on a polished diatribe against anything that invokes his ire (mainly capitalism).

Kumar deals almost exclusively in frustrated wrath, picking annoyances from the world of discontent that surrounds him. His politics are informed from a liberal perspective, and much of his anger is directed at right-wing practices, such as the privatisation of the NHS. He transcends ordinary political satire when he extends partisan values to more innocuous aspects of life, dismissing Monopoly as a plutocratic influence on children and pondering the effects of applying left-wing ideals to the Die Hard films.

He does loosen his exasperated political grip to delve into James Bond parodies and detailed assessments of exactly where the eight-film American Pie anthology went wrong, but his satire is more meek and restrained when it's targeting subjects about which he's clearly less passionate. The flow of gratifying catharsis resumes when he returns to skewering tax dodgers and closeted bigots.

His parlance is accessable despite the often technical nature of his topics, and he doesn't place an expectation on his audience to align with every view he's offering. There's a persuasive potency to his reasoning, though, and he relishes the chance to deconstruct his hypothetical opponent's rebuttal. He's on a lonely mission of moral indignance, but it's inflected with enough caustic wit to make it truly engaging to witness.