Sid Singh: American Bot (3 stars)

This article is from 2018

Sid Singh: American Bot

Pensive stand-up about racism deep in the heart of Silicon Valley

There's a slight hint of the Todd Barrys about San Francisco comic Sid Singh. The languorous delivery and semi-surrealist chatter are intact, but Singh is a far more explicitly political comedian. Those nasty billionaires are firmly in his sights as he believes, with plenty of justification, that they've helped to destroy his home city, as Silicon Valley has its wicked way with the Bay Area.

Singh goes through all the tech bosses one by way as he denounces the heads of Google, Facebook, Amazon, PayPal et al, with clarion-call material that would deafen anyone who finds themselves trapped in his echo chamber. For this Indian-American comedian, the worst aspect of the San Fran sea-change is that racism has risen many-fold, with Singh himself being the nightclub victim of the bigots' ire.

For them, the word 'tecchie' is synonymous with, and code for, a certain race. Singh attempts to turn all this on its head, but he is clearly devastated and shaken about his ordeal and continues to point the finger at the super-rich who have reneged on their responsibility to look at the big picture. The comic might not always show enough spirit to meet the problem head-on with blistering comedy, but his heart is deeply entrenched in the right place.

Just the Tonic at The Mash House, until 26 Aug (not 13), 6.25pm, £5 in advance or donations at the venue.

Sid Singh: American Bot

  • 3 stars

The former head of San Francisco’s Homeless Legal Services explains how tech billionaires are destroying his city and soon the world.