The West

Xavier Toby. Picture: Supplied

2014 - When We Were Idiots:
A Walking Tour With Xavier Toby
Perth Cultural Centre
3.5 stars
Review: Zoe Kilbourn

If there's one thing that lodges a show in this decade, it's a onesie. That one thing is also one of the few props in Xavier Toby's futuristic tour. Toby, in the guise of a penguin guide, leads smug tourists from 2114 through a simulation of 21st-century Perth. It's a dumb, goofy, lo-fi way to experience Fringe comedy.

Charmingly careless, Toby covers a lot of Perth armed with a faulty megaphone. He'll tell you about the Optus- Penguin war of 2019, shopping mall design, and pig parts. It's deliberately lighthearted and last-minute.

Any unfamiliarity Toby has with WA only underlines the funniest things about the State of Excitement - when he rips into the cactus or mentions the gold trapped like heat under Forrest Chase, you begin to realise how close every joke is to the truth.

The future is a utopia of waterslide travel and sustainable cannibalism. To reach that paradisal plateau, though, Australia had to deal with rising water levels, mandatory detention for refugee penguins and a reassessment of rubbish bins. Toby doesn't shy away from casual digs into consumerism and climate change but maintains a goofball equilibrium.

Audience participation is essential but non-threatening. It's the kind of show that will get stronger the longer it runs. It's stupid-good, and I'm stupid-glad Fringe provides an outlet for this organised make-believe.

The West Australian

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