Jenny Tian: Chinese Australian: A Tale of Internet Fame {Melbourne International Comedy Festival} – Comedy Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

After making her solo debut at last year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Jenny Tian is back in our fair city for her latest show – ‘Chinese Australian: A Tale Of Internet Fame’.

In comparison to her previous show ‘Picture This!’ which visits Jenny Tian’s upbringing, her family and culture, Chinese Australian: A Tale Of Internet Fame is more about Jenny Tian’s escape from an office desk job, her rise as a content creator during Covid, and her journey into becoming the successful comedian she is today.

Equipped with a tiny remote, a vertical screen that resembles a large smart phone, and dressed in her signature yellow attire, Jenny Tian was stoked to be greeted by a sold-out audience as she took to the ACMI – Swinburne Studio stage.

It’s clear that Jenny Tian is a stronger and more confident comedian than she was when she initially began her comedy route. In case you didn’t believe her, she proves this to you by showcasing past snapshots and footage of her that many comedians would otherwise not want to share.

Now if you don’t have a TikTok account or aren’t social media savvy like Jenny, never fear because she explains everything including what ‘Duets’ are and how algorithms work on TikTok with her ‘Melbourne vs Sydney’ clips. So, when these things are referenced later on in the show, everyone is kindly in on the joke and nobody is left behind.

Evidently, Jenny Tian has mastered her online comedy content but her latest comedy show, Chinese Australian: A Tale Of Internet Fame unfortunately feels a little disjointed. While the stories about her ditching the day job to embark on full-time comedy and follow her dreams is great, the sexual joke before Tian gets started on the main tale feel misplaced and are odd additions to her set. It would make sense if Tian used these as a segue to talk about dating or relationships like her previous show Picture This! but in Chinese Australian: A Tale Of Internet Fame these jokes never actually lead anywhere.

This isn’t to say that Chinese Australian: A Tale Of Internet Fame isn’t worth seeing. It is! Jenny Tian’s underdog journey is an interesting one to hear and even though you may or may not know the punchline at the very end, you’re still cheering for Jenny regardless.

It doesn’t matter if you have or haven’t seen Jenny Tian before – you’re still going to have a good time. Besides, after receiving all the relatable racial hate and prejudice during Covid for just being who she is and wanting to make a name for herself, how could you not want to support Jenny and her newfound comedy dreams?

With multiple sold out shows throughout the 2024 Melbourne International Comedy Festival, despite this new show not being as strong as her previous work, Jenny Tian remains a force to be reckoned with and is definitely not an underdog anymore.
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