Cal Wilson – Hindsight

By Lisa Clark 

The mainstream media took Cal for a bit of a scary ride last year, they decided to create a beat-up about a very personal story she shared in her 2017 Festival show Things I’ve Never Said. It was not fun and Cal has a blistering set in response towards the end of Hindsight that really kicks this show into a high gear.

Cal Wilson has been a favourite in the Australian comedy scene since first visiting here from her native New Zealand, she has since settled down here and most people know her as the bubbly, quick witted charmer on all the comedic panel and game shows on TV. Why she’s not hosting her own TV shows I do not understand. I’ve enjoyed many of her festival shows over the years, they are always reliable laugh fests to bring friends to. I got to know the more serious and hilarious, feminist side of Cal in her guest appearances at The Shelf and then The Guilty Feminist podcast. There is a sense that Cal has been adding something a bit darker and deeper to her quirky observational humour and it’s fantastic.

The first part of her show about over thinking things is a bit patchy. The music lyric segment might seem to have a wide appeal, but only if you know the songs. The more personal material works better, stories about her family are delightful and warm the audience into her exploration of anxiety which leads further into the risks associated with opening up your personal life to the general public.

Cal has a bit of a survey for the audience to join in on, to help her out with that eternal question “Is it just me?” and we learn that everyone is nervous about some things, and everyone has some quirky fears that are less common. When Cal gets stuck into the fears that most women, in particular, share and the fall out from last year’s show, she really shines. She is so passionately articulate, it’s thrilling to watch her go and the laughs keep coming. This is Cal that fans who listen to Guilty Feminist podcast know and love. I wished the whole show was an hour of THAT. Exploring, anxiety, shame and embarrassment with comedy, how they can cripple you, and looking back, how there are people who can use your anxiety against you, to try to keep you in your place.

Hindsight is a very apt and droll title for this show, once you understand the reference. Cal Wilson is funny and adorable and searingly smart, but she’s also as tough as the gorgeous boots she wears.

Hindsight is on at the Victoria Hotel – Banquet Room until April 22