CHOPPER: Make Deadsh*ts History (Aus)

Opera House, Wellington

07/05/2010 - 07/05/2010

SKY CITY Theatre, Auckland

11/05/2010 - 15/05/2010

NZ International Comedy Festival 2010

Production Details

NOMINEE, BEST INTERNATIONAL SHOW 2009, New Zealand Comedy Festival
Every 3 seconds, somebody, somewhere in the world is being a deadsh*t.
After 2009’s sell-out hit Harden the F*ck Up New Zealand, Heath Franklin’s Chopper is back, head-butting his way across the Taman, tackling an issue bigger than world poverty or climate change – eradication of the terminally stupid.
In a world that is designed to protect people from their own stupidity, Chopper is worried that natural selection isn’t getting a fair go. They are everywhere – at the shops, at work, on the road – they make these people our bosses. They give them licences to drive. They allow them to vote. They say charity begins at home; sometime it begins at the end of a gun. Bono, Chris Martin, Bob Geldof – all the songs and all the concerts in the world aren’t going to change the fact, the world has never been a safer place for total deadsh*ts. Forget Band Aid, Live Aid, Whinge F*ckin’ Whinge Aid – finally there’s a cause we can all get behind and a celebrity who has the moustache to pull it off.
Heath Franklin first burst onto NZ TV screens in C4’s Aussie sketch comedy show, The Ronnie Johns Half Hour, with his parody of the real life underworld figure, Mark ‘Chopper’ Read. Since 2007, as Chopper, Franklin has gone on to sell over 110,000 tickets, released two live DVDs, and has toured the world, playing to sold out audiences in Australia, New Zealand and the UK.
Make Deadsh*ts History is Franklin’s second full-length show with his comic creation Chopper, In 2010, he will return to NZ, visiting Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington, New Plymouth and Christchurch. To coincide with its NZ premiere, the live DVD of Make Deadsh*ts History, filmed at Pentridge Prison in Melbourne, will be released in May 2010.
In 2009, Franklin also portrayed Mervyn Toebeck in the lead role of the NZ feature film, Predicament, alongside Jemaine Clement (of Flight of the Conchords). The film is due to be released in May 2010.
So, donate today. Help Chopper help you ‘Make Deadsh*ts History’. All we are saying is give the global eradication of deadsh*ts a chance.
Together, we can do this.
“Australia’s favourite comedian….***** ” – Sunday Mail
You’d be a deadsh*t to miss it! See Chopper live and on stage this comedy festival!
Dates: Fri 7 May, 7.30pm
Venue: The Opera House, Manners St, City
Tickets:  Adults $38/ Conc. $34 Groups 6+ $34
Booking:  0800 TICKETEK (842 5385)  
Show Duration: 1 hour

Dates:  Tues 11 – Sat 15 May, 8.45pm
Venue: SKYCITY Theatre, City
Tickets:  Adults $38/ Conc. $34 / Groups 6+ $34
Booking:  0800 TICKETEK (842 5385)
Show Duration: 1 hour 

Audience a charity case, Chopper a philanthropist

Review by Caoilinn Hughes 12th May 2010

Felicity Ward makes for a brief and brazen warm up to Heath Franklin’s stand-up, stand-out performance as Chopper Reid in Auckland’s SkyCity Theatre from May 11th-15th.

If you’ve got a sense of humour and you’ve not got a ticket, get one. If only to save face for New Zealand’s comedy-going public [see below]. 

Franklin’s established comedic persona ‘Chopper’ – a parody of real life Australian sadistic criminal Mark ‘Chopper’ Read – takes us through the sociological phenomenon of ‘Dead Shits’. In his cleverly-composed presentation, Make Dead Shits History, Chopper considers the inadequacy, idiocy and incessant frequency of the ‘Dead Shit’ in modern society.

His research indicates that one in three people are Dead Shits. He carefully validates this research with every performance. Unfortunately, a gaping hole in his theory came to the fore in SkyCity Theatre last night, like the ‘Nothing’ of the Never-ending Story. It was worse than he had predicted. Auckland audience members painfully demonstrated that, in fact, three out of three people suffer from the affliction.

Chopper’s attempts to involve specific audience members yielded brick after brick after painful brick. Although notorious for giving his subjects a hard time (think of his ‘Harden the Fuck Up New Zealand’ tour last year), the playing out of a faux pilot TV script on-stage saw Chopper besieged with knives of indolence.

However, the catastrophic cast brought to light an almost charming, razor-sharp humour which may have otherwise been underrated as script. Much like the fascinating character he uses as his comic facade, after all the guts and expletives have been mopped aside, there’s genuine charisma and wit. And there’s improvisational perfection. Fuck yeah. 

Last night the audience was a charity case and Chopper was a philanthropist.
For more production details, click on the title above. Go to Home page to see other Reviews, recent Comments and Forum postings (under Chat Back), and News. 


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His two-out-of-three theory makes this critic a contender

Review by John Smythe 08th May 2010

Chopper’s first feat is to fill the Opera House for his one-night-stand on the same Friday night the ’Canes are playing the Reds at the Cake Tin. Of course those who think rugby’s more important would be deadsh*ts. That’s his theme. No surprises there, given the title of his show.

A video intro seems to exhaust all its possibilities, so his second feat would have to be his effortless filling of 90 minutes with a bloody funny show that pops the pus from the pimples infecting the arse end of society. Of course if he cut all the fuck ’n shit swear out words it’d only take an hour. But then it wouldn’t be the same.

He’s an amiable bastard beneath his rough exterior and he’s gone to the trouble of ensuring his show has structure and variety. That’s why he makes sure he keeps control, sorting out hecklers pretty smartly with a classic put-down (spoiler alert): “What is it about a show totally dedicated to showing up stupid people that would make you want to call out shit?” (alert ends)

His targets include celebrities trying to help people, bad drivers, drink-drive ads on TV, clichés, drug addicts, Emos, Goths, names for children, religion … And animals – yes, they can be major deadshits too.  

As a change of pace Chopper sets out to prove that two out of every three people is a deadshit by picking – spaced out over the show – out/on three audience members, asking them their names, what they do, and if the can share a) something really stupid they’ve done and b) a really interesting fact. We get Karen the scientist, Will the IT guy and Sam the dental assistant. It works.

Chopper’s PowerPoint screen also introduces segments about “Chopper’s Book to see what the fuck words are up to,” rejoicing in such chapter titles as ‘Deadshitwrecked’, something I can’t decipher from my scribble and ‘Deadschadenfreude’ which admits to the pleasure we get at seeing others being deadshits.   

He proves he cares about charities by screening his promotion for prostate examinations. And the final segment involves an unrehearsed reading of the pilot for Chopper Estates, a TV series he’s written, for which he enlists the services of (on this night) Karen, Will and Sam.  

A very different Wellington crowd – from greater Wellington, I’d say – laps it up. And I can’t help wondering what it means that he knocks us off in one night while his Auckland season next week covers five nights at SkyCity. I mean given his two-out-of-three theory … Or am I being a deadshit here?
– – – – – – – – – –
*I’m not being coy, I just have to be careful what words end up in your email alerts because of the moral watchdogs some workplaces have – two-out-of-three at a guess.
For more production details, click on the title above. Go to Home page to see other Reviews, recent Comments and Forum postings (under Chat Back), and News. 


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