Review: François Bellefeuille Le plus fort au monde

Review: François Bellefeuille Le plus fort au monde

By Daydree Vendette,

François Bellefeuille burst onto the scene with his brand of angry-guy comedy, looking like a cross between someone going to the grocery store in their pajamas and a well-accoutered hipster. As someone who enjoys both those things, I am inclined to view that as a favorable thing but the disheveled hair and utilitarian boots certainly lend an air of, if we meet in the street, let’s not have a conversation.

Burst really is the right word because those first few moments were the most forceful and loudest of the comedy set. That’s his trademark–old guy complaining, make no mistake about it; the audience roared in appreciation, laughter and applause for the first two minutes of his opening tirade.

The thing is, he’s not that old. Maybe it’s an unconscious bias on my part (well now I see it) but he plays into it with his disheveled greying hair and beard and complains about a variety of subjects that need years of contemplation to be able to find them absurd or annoying to the point of making them generalizations: people talking to you, girlfriends dragging their boyfriends to events they don’t want to go to, girlfriends creating conflict when their boyfriends don’t reflect their worldview back to them. Those are issues that seem to have gone the way of the dodo bird because the division of gender roles are less rigid and because relationships are about compromise and sometimes exploring something the other person wants to do, and not one person nagging you in order to ensure they get their way. He leans into it so strongly at times, it is like a rehashing of outdated sitcom tropes. The content within those tropes is fresh and charming though, and no one can deny there is a sweetness that overrides the complaining.

The angry guy is just the thing that gets people in the door and differentiates him. To limit him to that would be an easy and lazy analysis of his comedy. At certain times he would end a joke with perfect timing, wait a beat for applause and recall a detail of a previous joke. The subtle way this asks the audience to interact through the shared experience of the show is really masterful. There is a generosity to his way of wanting to include the audience into his narratives that was felt, even throughout the angry guy posturing.

At other times, he was able to string details together to make the audience laugh, sometimes from the beginning to the end of a joke without having an excess of punchlines.

He switched to the absurd to tell a sweet story about his girlfriend, referencing Fred Pellerin in the process and then publicly expunging that part of his personality. He also revealed details of his personal life and his love for his girlfriend and their children Milo and Dali.

The last part of the show was an art exhibition with impeccable commentary. I won’t give anything away to those who will see Bellefeuille in another town or at a later date except to say it is disturbing and magical and delightful.

François Bellefeuille is a masterful comedian. He was at the Salle Albert-Rousseau on Wednesday February 28, 2018 from 20:20 to 21:30 He will be presenting the same show, Le plus fort au monde March 24, April 27, April 28, and June 9.


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Categories: Arts & Culture, News, Reviews

About Author

Daydree Vendette

Daydree Vendette is passionate about all things that spread good vibes like animals, yoga, her rock collection, vegan food and creative expression in all forms. She has a master’s degree in literature and is a nerd searching for a field of study to latch onto next. She works as a technical writer and translator while pursuing other creative projects. She should travel more.

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