Romesh Ranganathan: Irrational tour
Sky City Theatre, Auckland, NZ
April 28th, 2017

4/5 stars
Reviewed by: JESSICA SUO


Here on New Zealand shores for the first time, UK-based Romesh Ranganathan brings his newest show Irrational to Auckland and let’s just say he wasn’t happy about it. Getting from the UK to New Zealand is a mission and he let us know about it. That’s what Ranganathan does. He struts around the stage professing the difficulties of everyday life… and it’s hilarious.

You may recognise Ranganathan from his many appearances in British panel and comedy shows such as Would I Lie to You?, Have I Got News For You, Mock The Week, 8 Out of 10 Cats and Live At The Apollo. Others may recognise him from his TV documentary series Asian Provocateur. It’s been announced for a second series to the applause of six people in the audience. His response was beautifully over-dramatised and sarcastic, perfect for the New Zealand audience.

The show started as if for an up-and-coming rock band. The waiting music featured British grunge rap and an impressive light show flashed as Ranganathan introduced himself to the stage.

Ranganathan performs the best kind of comedy; no gags, not cringy or insulting, but instead he is anecdotal. In the hour he talks of the difficulties of being happy, the regret of having three kids, the rabbit hole of Facebook and even joining ISIS.

Ranganathan is real; you watch and you relate. I don’t have children, let alone three but watching him speak I find myself yelling over the laughs at the person next to me about the similar situation in my own life. He swears, he avoids social interactions, he thinks New Zealanders are too nice and people like his mum more than him. He’s a millennial in a 39-year old’s body.

He calls his son a prick and that was a comedic moment I will always cherish.

He managed audience interactions like no other comedian I’ve ever seen. He’ll have a conversation with an audience member and refer to them so seamlessly throughout his show that when you realise, your ugliest laugh escapes you before you can try to hide it from your date.


This was part of the 2017 New Zealand International Comedy Festival. There are still a few shows to go in May, so head over to their website and take a look!