Privileged to cover both shows on the same night, I watched over fours hours of comedy. My face is a bit sore..but it’s worth it. After Onassis, Elephant Empire, Ladystache and Jape, the best of the festival were to perform and awards were to be given to those who impressed the most. One thing is sure: I am very happy I didn’t have to choose who was better than the rest because all the groups were simply amazing.
To start the second half of the night, 52 pick-up got the chance to open once more and did not disappoint with unhappy employees who trashed their ever so thoughtful “scumbag” boss Andrew and turned everyday situations like bus rides into awkward and annoying encounters. They were followed by Vest of Friends, providing the crowd with quick back-and-forth replies that kept the pace at a high tempo, and talking about pressing issues, such as the weather’s unusual sexiness. Needless to say, they definitely covered the bear necessities with their performance. Jape also performed for the second time of the night, coming back on stage with several renditions of a classic folk song from their character’s native Halifax…although they really sounded like awesome pirates.
There are two troupes in particular that I enjoyed the most at the festival. Firstly, Uncalled For, dressed in their red hoodies and blue marine shorts, showed the crowd what high fashion truly was with sass, demonstrated their board game knowledge and carried an all important parent meeting on the latest sugar-lending scandal in their neighbourhood. Secondly, Elephant Empire also made a second appearance, with another dazzling and fast paced sketch that ended in a combat between two boxers…one of which had the biggest heart, but was also the biggest loser. After getting the crowd involved to encourage Peebers to stand-up to his rival, the “Peebers chanting” turned into a version of the penis game, fuelling his 31 attempted and failed comebacks. I only have one thing to say: PEEBERS! PEEBERS! PEEBERS!
At the end of the show, awards were distributed to those lucky troupes who impressed the most. Vest of Friends won the prestigious “grinder” award, receiving a silent, knuckle-grinding ovation from the crowd. Onassis defeated Elephant Empire for the “Bag of Beer’ award. Finally, Jape won the award for the best of the Montreal Sketch Comedy Festival, of which they were very deserving. In my mind though, everyone tonight and throughout this entire week, is a winner.