Mockumentary time…excellent?

From Endemol, the makers of Big Brother, and Checkpoint Media, the makers of Fancy Boy (which was part of Fresh Blood), comes the webseries Dayne’s World, a documentary about South Africa-Australian stand-up Dayne Rathbone.

Rathbone won Raw Comedy in 2011 and has since been making a name for himself on the circuit doing a hybrid of character comedy and stand-up. This six part series, the first two episodes of which are now on YouTube, is fronted by another stand-up, Mike Nayna, who follows Rathbone around as he develops his play about Nelson Mandela and directs a short film based on one of his stand-up routines.

For us Dayne’s World was a difficult watch. It treads the delicate, Derek-esque line of making a comedy about someone with some kind of disability or mental health issue – and that’s hard to pull off, even Fawlty Towers didn’t quite achieve it.

At least, we’re assuming that Dayne’s mentally ill – how else to explain a scene from Dayne’s short film in which Dayne’s Dad snogs an actress while his provocatively-dressed Mum lies poutily in bed next to Dayne’s brother? Who’d think that was a good thing to film?

The alternative is that Dayne’s just a hugely misguided “artist”, who’s managed to achieve a certain level of success, and this series will slowly see his life unravel as it’s revealed that he’s just not very good.

With four episodes to go it’s hard to tell where this is heading, and with the slow pace and the low joke rate we’re not necessarily inspired to find out, but as it’s racked up an impressive number of views since it launched there’s clearly some interest out there.

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  • Andore Jr. says:

    I swear you could do a Ctrl+R and replace “Dayne” with “Chris Lilley”

  • Alex says:

    Nah. I can see how this type of show might piss people off. But I liked how confronting, awful and weird it was. I laughed. And I’m in no way a fan of Chris Lilley or Derek and their retreading of tired ground and hammering home the fake schmaltz. My take is it’s a character whose whole sense of what’s appropriate in a social setting is very broken. But who knows? Half the time I didn’t know what I was even watching, and I liked that fact. It doesn’t feel like something I’ve seen on TV here, and looking at the content of the show and how reluctant Australian TV is to take a punt on something this f*cked up, I can really see why.

  • saucy gibbon says:

    I saw the first episodes it was alright. I wish it would focus less on Dayne though as he can be a bit annoying. I find it interesting having a comedy about South Africans in Australia. I would like if it focused on the family and the play he’s making about Mandela. It seems to me obvious that a lot of scenes are staged. To be honest I’d rather he just write a sitcom about a South African family than the tired mocumentary angle.

  • Maggie says:

    The third episode is out now too:

    This show is a car crash btu kinda in a good way, I can’t look away and yet it’s hard to watch – i’m impressed there’s content like this being created here, it’s unique to say the least. would be interested to see a review after we all see where its going