This review first appeared in The Skinny
Chris Coltrane: There’s No Heroes Left Except All of Us @ Banshee Labyrinth
Chris Coltrane does for socialism what Caitlin Moran does for feminism, using jaunty humour and rousing optimism to expose society’s wrongs. In There’s No Heroes Left Except All of Us, Coltrane proves that laughter is a far more powerful tool than rage, utilising his sense of the ridiculous to reveal a rat’s nest of injustices. From Scarlett Johansson’s SodaStream shame and celebrity tax dodgers, to avaricious politicians and the horror of gendered Kinder Eggs, few escape his gleeful lefty swipes.
He doesn’t just talk the talk. Coltrane is an activist as much as a comedian, joining mass sit-ins, demonstrating with placards, even door-stepping the editor of the Daily Mail, and this passionate, proactive approach bleeds into his material. There’s no soapbox in sight; only a nice man chatting to a bunch of people about how we should maybe just try to share stuff and be nice to one other.
Visual aids are put to great effect, with one particular audio-visual combination reminiscent of E4’s excellent Fonejacker. Coltrane’s canny use of his Twitter feed is another nifty touch, with some very funny tweets popping up on screen even before the show starts.
Some more diehard politicos might find Coltrane’s approach lacks bite, but his message, his motivation – that we can all make a difference – is bang on the money. You’ll leave the sweaty dungeons of the Banshee Labyrinth feeling buoyant, possibly even inspired to pick up a placard, but more than anything filled with a sense of hope. Who knew the revolution could be so sweet?