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Published April 8, 2018

Is Daniel Sloss a sociopath? According to the Scottish stand up, quite a few people seem to think so. Sloss revels in drawing humour from darker subjects. His 2016 show was straight up called Dark, and his show last year, So? has reportedly broken up over 500 couples. All this bleakness, along with his ashamed ego, have caused Sloss to pause and reflect: is he a sociopath?

It’s a question that makes a strong through-line for Now. From here, Sloss happily lets loose on everything from orange juice to justifiable deaths. It’s a testament to Sloss’ skill that the audience follow him through each set up, across the expertly wound tension and into the cutting punchlines. It’s pretty difficult to actually fall out of the comfortable red chairs of ACMI’s cinemas, but Sloss has his audience damn close, buckling with laughter. He has tight, near-perfect control of his pacing and delivery, knowing how to read reactions and pop the pressure at the last possible second. The observational aspects of the show provide an excellent foil to the narrative beats Sloss hits. There’s also an explanation of why unsolicited dick pics are a bad idea that it may actually convince a few men to stop sending them.

Now is 70 minutes of traditional stand up brought near the peak of its form. Intelligent and incisive, Sloss’ stand up leaves the audience wondering about their own relationship to logic and emotion. His talent comes in being able to combine the two into genuinely hilarious comedy.

Now is on at ACMI until 22 April as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Tickets, show details and accessibility information can be found via the MICF website.

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