Review: Matt Winning: Climate Strange at Just the Tonic at The Mash House

Who said learning wasn’t fun?

Those with a fear of education, look away now. Dr. Matt Winning is making a (Mash) house call, prescribing the old tonic of laughter. Whatever your level of knowledge about climate change, Winning comes with new, startling, facts that provide a whole new perspective on climate change, the effects it will have, and perhaps more importantly, the effect we have on it.

The content of the show centres around the fact that the good doctor and his girlfriend want to try for a baby. Unfortunately, as a man who can’t let a plastic bottle go unrecycled, Winning feels that he can’t really justify having a child, since it’s apparently the single worst thing you can do to your carbon emissions. The show consequently chronicles his efforts to offset the carbon imprint of his hypothetical baby.

Taking us through an uproarious tour of climate change science, deniers, and his day to day life as a climate change researcher and standup comic, Winning creates a perfect rapport with the audience – not relinquishing his authority as the lecturer to his charges, but nonetheless making us all feel like the favourite student. His jokes are varied between visual gags, asides, and outright rants about annoying colleagues, but it all carries you through to a decisive, proactive conclusion, complete with helpful tips on how we can reduce our own carbon emissions. This is all sprinkled with personal explanations about why Winning cares so much about climate change, and why we should too – he brings the audience with him every step of the way.

To my eye, this is everything a Fringe show should be: hilarious, personal, inventive, and something that will stay with you for some time to come. Go see it, before the sea rises and washes us all away!
Matt Winning: Climate Change is at Just The Tonic at The Mash House, August 15 – 26.
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