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Published April 6, 2017

There are stories of coincidence and chance that you can’t fabricate due to the ludicrous implausibility of them, and then there’s Sammy J’s new show, Hero Complex. From Sammy’s childhood obsession with comic book hero The Phantom to a visit from a member of the Australian Police Force last year, the musical comedian weaves a tale of such incredible absurdness that if it weren’t for all the evidence he presents to back it up, you wouldn’t believe it.

The show is a long, sustained, narrative with the occasional musical interlude and any more detail from me would immediately spoil the twists and revelations of the story. What I can say, though, is that the story is told engagingly and with a good pace, keeping the audience engaged throughout.

After many years of trying to get to one, this was my first Sammy J show, so I’m not able to place this show in context of the rest of Sammy J’s work. At the same time, I can say that Hero Complex is a perfectly accessible show for other first-timers.

So, for a little trip down Sammy J’s memory lane, weaving together a story so incredible it couldn’t work as fiction, with a couple of songs and a whole lot of The Phantom trivia, Hero Complex is fun and engaging, start to finish.

Pro tip: Make sure you have $15 on you.


Hero Complex is on at 8:15 pm at the Victorian Hotel as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival until 23 April. Tickets are available online, at the venue, or at the festival box office.

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