Café Komodo
Until 12 Mar 2022

Review by Lance Jones

When one thinks of “The Fringe”, one normally sees Adelaide’s East End in the mind’s eye. Yet that is just limiting. Fringe venues stretch right across this lovely city and it’s surrounds. Embracing this thought, one needs to venture just a short 10 minutes or so north down King William and O’Connell Streets and on to the trendy almost-inner-city district of Prospect. The quaint Prospect Road precinct has embraced The Fringe with it’s wonderful art gallery, street festivals and quirky eateries, including one of Adelaide’s most unique dining experiences, Café Komodo. This Fringe, the café hosts a very entertaining show all about “Dad Jokes”.

One must head down a side alleyway off the regular Prospect Road restaurant beat, through an archway of vines and fairy lights and into a very special place hidden out “the back”, where the food is excellent and the hosts engaging. Old vinyl records and music posters adorn the walls, with the laminated tables and uneven floors displaying the very best in kitsch-chic. The atmosphere is both immediately relaxing and somewhat adventurous. Did I mention “quirky”?

The deliberately overstated yet authentic faux bohemian décor shouldn’t fool you. The food is awesome and the coffee heavenly. Normally, Café Komodo is the kind of place lending itself to a long Sunday brunch or a late-night bite; but not tonight. The punters were about to enjoy the latest Fringe offering by regular Adelaide clown and “Laughterologist” Dr Bumbles’ as he delivered his “Dad Joke Challenge”.

This Fringe Show is a joint venture between Café Komodo and The Amazing Magic Entertainment Group, where proceeds from ticket sales are donated to the Humour Foundation to help fund the “Clown Doctor” programme at the Adelaide Women’s and Children’s Hospital. Not only are you fed and watered well, but you can have a laugh and assist a worthy charity at the same time. What a great night out!

The show takes the form of a challenge to members of the audience to “not laugh” at the vast array of groanworthy “Dad Jokes”. The delivery is suitably cheesy (as dad jokes usually are) and also very funny (once again, as dad jokes usually are, even though we hate to admit it!). Dr Bumbles uses various props and a stage set up like a typical game show, complete with the “wheel of misfortune”. The challenges are not too taxing, like getting your fingernails painted badly or enduring a fake tattoo. There are prizes to be won as well, including a free cocktail if you are lucky with the wheel. Punters are invited to donate $20 in lieu of a challenge, although no pressure is applied to do so.

Yet, why not to donate to a great cause? Dr Bumbles provides the entertainment and Café Komodo provide the venue free, with all the proceeds going to help sick kids smile. It’s a great time in a quirky venue with wonderful food and an amusing host, in one of Adelaide’s hippest Fringe precincts and all in support of a worthy cause.

Prospect Road awaits those needing something different. This Fringe, an entertaining and quirky experience awaits, thanks to Café Komodo and Dr Bumbles. It’s a show not to be missed!

Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)