Reviewed by: Fringefeed
Review by Elizabeth Lydon | 19 January 2019

The Best Boy In Ireland is an hour of successive storytelling about one man’s journey to becoming a comedian, Irish life and families.

Thriving in the intimate setting of the Studio Startup Basement, audiences will be treated to the rapid-fire, edgy storytelling of Kilkenny comedian Michael Rice, aka Big Mike.

Following the footsteps of other Irish comedians who started their careers overseas, Rice’s story begins in rural Kilkenny (south-east farm land in Ireland) with an array of characters – namely his family.

As Rice presents different family members and friends into the mix, he gives the audience well-developed characters in his adventures.

His ability to rapidly transform into these characters, with distinct accents of varying success, will give audiences an accurate look into Irish life.

The star character of this performance would be Rice’s father.

Depicted as non-verbose, conservative, crow hating and fried sausage loving, Rice’s formidable father is the perfect foil for Big Mike’s style of comedy.

The audience howled with delight as they got to see a perfectly timed photograph of his father; it was a highlight of the hour.

Another aspect of the performance also depicted contemporary Irish life, it would be rare to find people willing to poke fun at the divisive Irish ‘Repeal the 8th’ campaign.

Everyone in Rice’s story was a fair target and the humour was well received.

While the beginning and middle sections of the hour were excellent, the ending felt disjointed.

Steering away from the popular family stories which left the audience in stitches of laughter, the ending stories focused on Rice’s job seeking attempts.

Being an overseas comedian, there will be some expected references to Australian summers and a dreadful attempt at an Australian accent.

While gimmicky, these references are never intended to be nasty.

Rice’s affable personality and friendly greeting to all attendees was also an appreciated touch.

Audiences will not be disappointed in this engaging hour of Irish life, dealing with families, and what it takes to follow your passions.