[2013106] Danny McGinlay: Hypertonic

[2013106] Danny McGinlay: Hypertonic

Danny McGinlay @ Gluttony – The Pig Pen

8:15pm, Thu 7 Mar 2013

My “planning” copy of the Fringe Guide has a wobbly circle around this show, which is my shorthand for mmmmmaybe; I’d never heard of Danny McGinlay before, but his précis looked vaguely interesting. But, more importantly, there was one word that caught my eye:


But more about that later.

McGinlay’s got a decent crowd in a sticky Pig Pen this evening, and from the moment he hits the stage he owns the room. Note that I didn’t say that he won the room over; it’s more a vibe I got from McGinlay himself. He’s got a very alpha-male presence about him that feels… well, wrong; some comics can play top-dog in a room to great success, but McGinlay’s aggressively assertive presentation didn’t seem to fit, and felt like it was more suited for a be-the-best-you-can-be seminar.

Still, as he discusses “the biggest year of [his] life” – travel stories abound, along with tales of failed TV shows and backhanded compliments to his wife – there’s a few good laughs to be had. But then he starts talking about the best hangover cure: SBS PopAsia.

Now, I’ve been on a massive K-pop bender, and so I was a little bit thrilled – and a little bit annoyed, in a this-guy-can’t-be-interested-in-my-favourite-band kinda way – when McGinlay started talking about Girls’ Generation’s Mr Taxi (from which that magic word “hypertonic” is drawn), describing the Girls’ recuperative visuals… and then detailing how he was inspired to look up the translation of the “Korean” lyrics.

The thing is, those lyrics are Japanese. Sure, he was making a point about K-pop in general, and Girls’ Generation is most certainly a K-pop group… but that video (and the rendition of the song that played at the end of the show) is Japanese. (Yes, there is a Korean version of the song, but it was never released as a single or MV.)

This annoyed me. A lot. And it seems awfully trivial, but that song in particular is how I got into K-pop. And I love the stuff now, completely and genuinely; I even went to South Korea to see a bunch of K-pop concerts, and I can trace that all back to Mr Taxi… so I’m a little protective about it.

McGinlay didn’t win me back from there – I crossed my arms with petty, superior knowledge and silently dared him to entice me back, but his alpha-male style kept him at arm’s length. But I feel completely justified: no-one mixes up my Girls.

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