Hunter has a magnificent stage presence – he swaggers, nonchalantly with cigarette in hand (“it makes you look interested in people”), delivering a candid combination of quips, philosophical musings and uncensored opinions. He stands underdressed in scruffy jeans and a faded hooded top, yet with such a booming, melodic sincere voice, Hunter commands your respect.
Without being arrogant, Hunter does not care whether or not his opinions are ‘right’, so long as they’re his own. He declares that unlike other comedians, he is prepared to take the consequences of delivering a sincere show – which, he remarks, includes performing to a less than full house in an unlikely location. Despite being RADA-trained actor with a repertoire spanning Shakespeare to Panto, Hunter is not prepared to put on an act.
In his show, life is revealed by Hunter to be a bizarre routine of nonsensical gestures, exchanges and relationships – series of “deals” that we make – deals that are made without being questioned. Hunter informs us that he has been accused of being a misogynist, a racist as well as anti-Semitic; but it becomes clear that these labels are as a result of other people making deals on his behalf – ridiculous.
Hunter is clearly frustrated at our lack of desire to question the systems that are put in place by religion, politics and economics – and in fact any system put in place by anyone other than ourselves. Amidst the hilarity is a real sense of dissatisfaction with man’s desire to do things appropriately as opposed to autonomously.
If comedy is a vehicle for discussing serious matter, then Hunter is a drink driver, carefully guarding his movements yet unrestrainedly taking risks and being disloyal to society’s contrived expectations.
If I am to really take on board Hunter’s message, then I must also be suspicious of it and consider it carefully – I must guard my mind.
Reginald D Hunter skilfully delivers comedy that conforms to nothing. You are left feeling thoroughly entertained, yet fantastically uneasy.