From the Aunty Donna manufacturing home, Hug The Solar’s model of sketch comedy disguised as a fictional kids’s program is hilarious, absurd, and typically uncomfortable.
Anybody searching for their subsequent Aussie oddball sketch comedy to observe up final 12 months’s hilarious Aunty Donna’s Big Ol’ House of Fun will likely be properly served by tuning into Hug the Solar, a six-part internet sequence a few fictional cult-like group spreading their message to the kids of Western Australia.
From Aunty Donna’s Melbourne-based Haven’t You Accomplished Effectively manufacturing home, the six-part Hug the Solar sequence paperwork the lengthy misplaced episodes of a fictional WA kids’s neighborhood TV present that ended abruptly within the early 90s. Its title stems from the central idea of instructing pint-sized viewers concerning the solar god ‘Oxtos’, the place the presenters regularly solicit donations to pay bail for his or her chief, Gary the Prophet (Greg Larsen). With a solid wholly dedicated to the bonkers idea – starring comedians Andrea Gibbs, Ben Russell, Bonnie Davies and Xavier Michelides – Hug the Solar makes for routinely humorous, and typically uncomfortable, viewing.
Every of Hug the Solar’s episodes revolves round a central theme, comparable to gratitude or rituals, which establishes a way of consistency between every sketch. The sequence depicts a ‘dwell’ studio viewers of youngsters to whom the presenters direct their kooky messages of Oxtos, regardless of the content material and language being hilariously inappropriate for youthful viewers. Hug the Solar is as if Play Faculty have been within the midst of an acid journey, desperately making an attempt to fund its legal actions. One episode sees the kids informed that their dad and mom will cease loving them in the event that they don’t present gratitude in direction of Oxtos and donate to the aforementioned bail fund. This entire incongruence of preaching a supposed message of affection to an impressionable group blended with sidebars about bikie gangs, milking canine, and a common disdain for the Australian Federal Police, is what generates loads of hearty laughs among the many absurdity.
A part of Hug the Solar’s weird attraction is the way it adopts the traits of early 90s tv viewing to leap from one sketch to a different. Episodes primarily seem in a distorted 4:3 ratio, chromatic aberration aplenty, spliced with footage of commercials (extra skits) and outdated footy matches, as if somebody had recorded over outdated VHS tapes on the VCR. Even the presenters – all of whom look like one small mishap away from collapsing right into a nervous breakdown – signify the period with splendidly garish sweaters. Every solid member brings a definite model of humour to the sequence, and a particular point out should go to Russell, whose intense efficiency of a person who flies too near Oxtos creates most of the sequence’ finest laughs.
Hug the Solar does share some seen DNA with Aunty Donna’s Massive Ol’ Home of Enjoyable by way of its interwoven narrative threads inside and between episodes. With Hug the Solar’s aforementioned episode themes, the sense of continuity is a departure from the comparatively random pacing of traditional Australian sketch exhibits Full Frontal and Skithouse, and a definite level of distinction from equally absurd American sequence I Suppose You Ought to Depart. This leaves Hug the Solar with loads of room for pointed callbacks and escalating jokes, comparable to Neighbour George (a recurring cameo from Aunty Donna’s Broden Kelly) lamenting at size concerning the violent bikie shakedowns he’s encountered, in entrance of a dwell studio viewers of younger children.
Not one Hug the Solar episode breaks the 10-minute barrier, and the continuity makes every section of the fictional present really feel like micro-sketches of 1 nine-minute sketch. It means not one of the central themes and jokes last more than obligatory, though typically the momentum of snickers constructed all through an episode ends abruptly earlier than reaching a punchline climax.
A excessive tolerance for absurdity and unusual shenanigans is crucial for admission into Hug the Solar’s circus of chaotic cult comedy, however this shouldn’t come as a shock contemplating the expertise concerned in any respect ranges of manufacturing. Though a contact brisk, Hug the Solar leaves loads of room for laughs from the crew sooner or later – assuming the AFP don’t get to them first.
4 Stars: ★★★★
HUG THE SUN
Creators: Xavier Michelides and Ben Russell
Director/Producer: Aaron McCann
Producer: Johnny Ma
Government Producer: Max Miller (Aunty Donna)
Writers/Performers: Andrea Gibbs and Bonnie Davies
Writing Attachment: Erin Michelle
Hug the Solar could be viewed entirely on Youtube