Rahul Kohli was unperturbed by the small audience on the evening this reviewer attended, likening it to ‘a Theresa May cabinet meeting’. He then delves into the provocative title of the show, explaining that in the following hour, he won’t provide any answers to society’s questions – instead, he will leave us with more questions. And on this, he does not disappoint! Kohli has carved a diverse and charismatic exploration of some red-hot topics like Brexit, political correctness, racism and sexism.
An hour of fast paced rapier wit
Kohli is a Geordie on a mission – likening the internet to thalidomide, and damning his grandmother as 'a racist bitch’ and his aunt ‘the most racist person he knows’. He explores the immense question of whether we can separate the artist from their art, in particular where they have committed decidedly heinous acts. In addition, he candidly scrutinises his experiences of racism, both as perpetrator and victim. Rape culture, transgender identities and lad culture are some of the other hard hitting topics Kohli attempts to disentangle, though admittedly he states that this is not an easy feat and through a series of interesting facts and mind bending perspectives, we consider whether we can ever detach the crime from the criminal.
According to Kohli, we are living in a world steeped in and celebrating paedophilia, misogyny and racism and it’s heartening to hear a performer genuinely explore the question of whether he is ‘as bad a sex pest as Harvey’, and for a person of colour to probe his own relationship with racism. This honest introspection is refreshing and original, in an hour which goes by way too quickly. Kohli has been performing for six years, and it’s reasonable to assume that he will continue to refine his art.
Kohli squeezes a lot into an hour, and with language that will make you laugh consistently as well as squirm uncomfortably in your chair throughout, you will also leave with more questions than you arrived with. Which is precisely Kohli's aim. This is an hour of fast paced rapier wit which will leave you forever changed.