Daniel Sloss commences So?! by asking if anyone in his audience considers themselves to be a good person and then proceeds to demonstrate why he probably isn’t one. It’s an unusual gambit but appropriate considering his dark, bordering on bleak, brand of comedy.
Being a lover of black humour, Sloss was recommended to me by a friend who saw his 2016 show Dark, in which he counterpointed the usual sex, death and paedophilia jokes you’d expect of this particular comic niche, with the stunningly poignant truth of his sister’s cerebral palsy and unfortunate passing at a young age.
In So?! Sloss explains that his family uses gallows humour as a coping mechanism to deal with the terrible loss, and that informs his deeply dark comedic style which now seems to have extended far beyond the original need for levity in face of grim reality. Rather, it appears he’s using this finely honed skill to perform the dark art of breaking up couples through comedy, under the guise of wanting us all to only share our lives with a partner we can say we absolutely love 100%.
Sloss proves you don’t need a university education to know how to do your research and construct an intelligent argument. In fact, he is brilliantly skilled at doing just that and making it achingly funny at the same time. The only disturbing thing is how he chooses to use his brilliance. Targeting Catholics with his Atheist arguments is easy work and a choice that many, especially those with a penchant for black humour, will easily embrace. However, few will be left untargeted or seated comfortably by his arguments on what defines a good romantic relationship. The glee he seems to take in this work could be described as more than a little bit evil, but maybe it’s just a cry for help. Either way it’s a stimulating form of entertainment.