^ As above. He killed it [sorry Paul :( ]
I certainly did not expect three levels packed to the rafters in what was a completely unadvertised gig from a reasonably obscure comedian, albeit with a cult following. For some reason, the crowd made me feel like I was going to some punk gig in the 90s at Festival hall.
I also wasn't expecting a standing ovation for Doug as he walked on stage, which pretty much guaranteed as GRR said, that we would be eating out of his hand as a crowd.
Doug did just under 90 minutes, and it was pretty much all quality. The good thing about Doug is that he clears the decks material-wise very frequently, so it was 100% material I'd never heard before, and I saw him 2 years ago. Compare this to other overseas comedians coming yearly to our shores and doing the same jokes again and again, this is the sign of a very good comic.
Material was edgy, challenging, clever and darkly funny. He traversed some pretty nervy subject matter, ISIS beheadings, vietnam vets, kids with cancer, suicide, shooting massacres and mentally ill. You weren't always sure what point he was making or who he was taking the piss out of, or whether you should be offended or no - he kept you on your toes.
A personal favourite moment was an opening rant about Byron Bay surfers as hippy bullies and his plan to scum the water with shark bait (which instantly endeared him to my heart).
Also plenty of attempted heckles from the audience which Doug dispatched with professional ease. If I wasn't digging a joke or a subject matter, I could just bask in the guys technique and skill, it is just so polished.
You know its a good gig when you leave and your cheeks hurt like crazy, and everybody stands round the front with huge smiles on their faces.
I would have to say, it was on par with the awesome performance I saw from him in the states in 2012. If there was one slight disappointment, he didn't really do any of his trademark epic set pieces (usually with extreme sexually explicit imagery) where he just goes down the rabbit hole with a crazy dark idea and has the audience struggling for breath. I recall memorably two excellent bits 'Backdoor to Chyna' and 'Aids on any given Sunday'(he actually referenced the latter routine last night) which absolutely slayed me and stayed in my head for ages afterwards. In contrast last night was consistently good but without any real super stand-out moment or particularly memorable bit.