Irreverent, wild and most importantly, funny. Aidan ‘Taco’ Jones has everything he needs to succeed as Australia’s next larrikin comedian, but tellingly he’s only getting started, and has more to offer.
Jones, or Taco to his mates, latest effort is 52 Days, a show based on the diary he kept on a deck of cards throughout 2012 as a 20 year old. And mates we all were to Taco as he recounted countless drink-fuelled escapades from Adelaide, to Melbourne and even Bolivia in what can only be described as a whirlwind 12 months.
Jones handed out the deck of cards to the audience pre-show and everyone held theirs in their hands like they were doing some kind of lottery office review. As Jones took them back one by one to prompt a memory, and a story to go with it, the show was given a loose, improvised feel that complimented his ‘she’ll be right’ persona, and got those watching onside from the start. It also gave the gig an extra edge, setting it just slightly apart from the classic format of stand-up comedy (i.e. person with mic tells stories).
Like any great Australian story teller, Taco felt instantly familiar to the crowd, leading from the front with his infectious presence, through the murky depths of his memory as if they had been there with him the whole time, and in fairness it could hardly have worked better. Taco touched on sex, relationships, drugs and booze (you know, all the good stuff) but was at his best when poking fun at himself, and it was in these moments of self-reflection where his true comedic talent and potential lay.
As funny as the recount of his mate taking so many drugs that experts wrote a study on him was, not to mention the seemingly endless, yet hilarious dating disasters he found himself in, Taco’s best efforts came in moments of introspection, and honesty about himself and his relationships.
Drawing on life experience in the years since 2012, and his learnings through meditation, Taco hit the high notes in moments of zen. Showing everyone that he’s no dummy, he set the joke up with thoughtful, if not at times emotional analysis of his life as a younger man before bringing it all crashing down, back below the belt with another side splitting punchline. The undoubted highlight of his set was the closer, a detailed, if slightly disturbing story of his feelings about cleaning up after his housemates.
Taking serious and personal topics, and effortlessly turning them in to jokes is a skill many young comedians would kill for, and Taco has it in spades. Jones is still a young man in his 20s, and it’s hard to see his career going anywhere but skyward with age as he takes the bit between his teeth and grows between the ears. With another few years of meditation, we could have someone scarily funny on our hands.
In short, Jones was brilliant on the night, 40 odd punters in a packed room, in raucous fits of laughter can’t be wrong. He got big, consistent laughs throughout, and that’s the only measuring stick worth using. Better yet, there’s only more to come.