Comedy review: Nazeem Hussain – Legally Brown

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One half of the politically fuelled Australian double act, Fear of a Brown Planet, Nazeem Hussain doesn’t seem likely to run out of material anytime soon.

Star rating: ***

Venue: Assembly George Square Studios (Venue 17)

Focusing on race, religion and terrorism with an engagingly international perspective, he’s adroit at noticing the little flash points and fault lines in our ethnic melting pots, a droll jester who fronts a television sketch show with the same title as this, his solo Fringe debut.

That celebrity, person-of-interest status affords him a dubious privilege though, revealing first-hand insights into the conduct of the War on Terror – whether it’s his inevitable detainment by US customs, to the frankly shocking monitoring of him by the Australian authorities, so attentive that he ends up in bizarre, lengthy conversations with his shadows.

He’s perceptive on what it means to be second generation and the enduring myths perpetuated about immigrants, not least by those, such as his Sri Lankan mother, trying to instil the necessary ambition for them to overcome resistance. Inbetween the arch, passionately conveyed satire, there’s more workaday observational material, especially around Hussain’s materialist weaknesses. This endears him to the crowd but rather blunts the edge of his sharper barbs.

Until 28 August. Today 8pm.

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