Write because you want to, not because you have to.
Overall review: ★★★★★ Date attended: 16/02/2019
I don't care if you're religious or not, but I do sincerely believe that Mandy Nolan and Ellen Briggs from Women Like Us are the true goddesses in our lives and everything they say and do is the absolute word of sacred truth.
Yesterday, when I walked into the National Wine Centre for the comedy show by the two 50-year old ladies, I was initially a bit reluctant if me, a 27 year old with her life in a bit of a beautiful yet chaotic mess, still trying to figure out what a woman at my age was expected to do, say, or think, would find myself out of place. Turns out, I was right at home!
While I was initially intimidated by how powerful both Briggs and Nolan appeared to be, they were just as friendly with some of the sweetest voices you've ever heard. Upon walking on stage, there was a presence of comfort, a safe space, and a space where everything that you're thinking is said out loud (and proud!) by Briggs and Nolan through the art of comedy.
Split across two hours by doing a segment each for around 60 minutes, Ellen Briggs and Mandy Nolan gave the audiences content around being a mother, a wife, and a woman that will forever be imprinted in our memories (by choice or by force - you decide). I can also almost guarantee you that most of us felt that the time had just flown past and we sure as heck did not want the show to end. Being lovers of wine, the venue could not be more fitting, as audience members somehow sipped on delicious wine and rolled around in laughter fits from every sentence that came out of these brutally honest yet relatable ladies.
Some of the topics we covered in great, hysterical detail include the trends in the beauty and cosmetics industry, going through menopause, the frustrations of raising teenage children, the weird ways of practising self-love, and fat shaming. And that's not even all of it! Chances are, if you've thought about something or are curious about how something works, or didn't know that you needed to know about something (labiaplasty or a dishwasher-proof vibrator, anyone?), Briggs and Nolan have talked about it and potentially scarred you in the process, as you cry (yes, cry!) from laughing so hard at the ridiculousness and accuracy of it all.
It is no surprise to see that the show was packed out to the back of the room and the ladies sure know how to work a room! While there is minimal audience participation, there were plenty of happy responses bouncing from one end of the room to the other, as Briggs and Nolan delivered their punchlines when you least expected it. I'd be a bit offended if they weren't considered pioneers of comedy, because they know their sh*t and do that sh*t damn well! Being able to perform as flawlessly by themselves as they did as a collaborative team towards the end, along with post-show interactions gave us a clear image of how charmingly they can channel their thoughts and their mannerisms to leave audiences with a big smile (realistically speaking, a big fit of laughter) on their faces.
I didn't think it was physically possible to survive a belly ache from laughing every 10 seconds, but here we are and so be it! Briggs and Nolan are incredible at what they do and it would be a crime not to be in the same room with them at any given point of your life. Heck, it should be part of a woman's right to be able to be blessed by Briggs and Nolan, as they paint you a completely different (strangely more enjoyable) picture of what it's like to be a 50-something woman with a family and dealing with the crazy, unrealistic societal standards. Their style of comedy is a bit crudey-rude-y but oh so goody! It doesn't matter if you're 18 or 80, you'll be able to relate to Briggs and Nolan's different examples of what it's like to juggle the many responsibilities of being a woman in a totally new light.