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Daniel Sloss: “I’m walking on bareback, no protection”

When people say “don’t believe the hype”, you assume they’re talking to you. Don’t get too invested; that person’s not as good as you think they are – they just have a really good publicist. It turns out, as we learned speaking to Scottish comedian wunderkind Daniel Sloss, sometimes they’re just talking to themselves.

Returning to Australia for his new stand-up show, HUBRIS, Sloss emerges from a time of self-reflection that was forced upon him by the inconvenience of this pandemic. Off the back of a considerable period of ongoing success, that reset was incredibly well-timed, and it’s difficult to imagine what would have happened if Sloss wasn’t forced into a long-deserved break.

“On the tour,” he describes, “the last two I did, it nearly…Well, in fact, it did break me. I had several mental breakdowns over that fucking tour that resulted in me going to therapy and just dealing with it.” He continues: “And also the show was about, I don’t know if you’ve seen it, but my friend was sexually assaulted by one of my close friends and to re-live that every single night, I lost my absolute mind.”

While he points out that it wasn’t the fault of his audience (“it was my fault for packing in too big of a tour and it was my manager’s fault”), he adds that there were “points on that tour when I walked out on stage in front of a room full of people and I fucking hated them for making me be there…Too much success at the time, too much attention at the time, I got high my own supply and I fucking believed the hype. I took things for granted and I’m just excited to get back to it, I really am.”

He’s had the time he’s needed, the help he’s needed, and he’s finally ready to be able to get back to comedy without the strings of exhaustion and trauma attached. “My fiancé keeps going, ‘Are you going to practice? Are you going to do a preview at any point?’” he laughs. “And I’m like, ‘No’. That first fucking Melbourne audience, I’m walking on bareback, no protection, just because I cannot express to you how much I’ve missed my job. It’s driven me fucking insane not being able to do it, man. I’ve tried the methadone versions of stand-up: I did carpark gigs, I’m on fucking Twitch, all these little methadone versions of stand-up, but none are as good as the real thing.”


“I even fucking missed Adelaide, I’m excited to get back to the worst city in the first fucking world.”


Sloss has always dealt with subjects that are either sobering or taboo in his shows, from addressing the death of his sister in Dark to directly breaking up thousands of relationships with his wisdom in Jigsaw. You actually don’t have that to look forward to this time, though he does point out that his friends have called bullshit that he’s not spontaneously going to crack a lecture halfway through a show.

“My past four shows have been great, but they followed the very sort of similar-ish, not theme, but delivery, which is I’ll do 45 to an hour of stand-up of just making fun of shit, and then I’ll do 15 minutes of, ‘Hey, here’s some sad shit about your feelings and this is a very dark topic that I’m going to talk about very professionally’, and then I make some more dick jokes. And it was always getting to the point where around the 60 to 70 minute mark of my show, I could see the audience going, ‘He’s going to do it. He’s going to do a sad bit now, this is when he does the sad bit, everyone emotionally prepare for Daniel Sloss’ sad bit.’ So I just went, ‘Fuck it, I’m doing the opposite’. I’m just going back to what I love, just stand-up, just saying horrible things that I sometimes mean and that I sometimes don’t.”

He’s not exaggerating, either; the bare minimum that most people know of Daniel Sloss is a segment from Jigsaw that he boasts has broken up over 120,000 couples. People graciously ask him to sign their divorce papers, so it’s rather awkward that he’s just gotten engaged himself. When asked how he feels about everyone who’s going to blame him for breaking up their relationship in this new light, his answer remains consistent: “Still thrilled.”

“The whole point of Jigsaw was that I do believe in love, I do believe in true love, I do believe in it, but I’m so sick of the bullshit relationships that are out there. I think I’m very confident that I have found the correct one. One that doesn’t make me compromise, which I’m now realising is a weird thing…It’s very weird to be loved unconditionally. I don’t think it’s a good thing. I’ve got no desire to improve, I’ve put on weight, I’m shit now.”

He’s being overly critical of himself, of course – he’s also used this time in lockdown to write an entire book, which will hopefully be out later this year. He insists that he has to tour on the book, or no one will buy it, and that it’ll probably be his one and only dalliance into literature, noting “the second stand-up comedy comes back, you’ll never be able to convince me to write a fucking book again.”

For now, he’s revving up for two weeks of hotel quarantine to get the hit of stand-up he’s desperately yearning for out in Australia (“I’ve been in UK lockdown three times, you think sitting in a hotel room for two weeks is going to bore me?”) He’s bringing his Xbox over to get him through, although he’s dying for a PlayStation 5, and he’s even excited to get back to Adelaide. “I even fucking missed Adelaide, I’m excited to get back to the worst city in the first fucking world. The worst city the world has ever created, fucking Adelaide. I’m excited to get back there and it is a shithole. You fucking print that, fuck Adelaide, and I’m excited to go back.”

Daniel Sloss ‘HUBRIS’ Australian Tour

Sunday 11th April
HOTA, Gold Coast
Tickets: Home of the Arts

Tuesday 13th April
Theatre Royal, Hobart
Tickets: Theatre Royal

Thursday 15th April to Sunday 18th April
Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Melbourne
Tickets: Comedy Festival

Tuesday 20th April to Thursday 22nd April
Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Brisbane
Tickets: Queensland Performing Arts Centre

Friday 23rd April to Sunday 25th April
Sydney Comedy Festival, Sydney
Tickets: Sydney Comedy Fest

Tuesday 27th April and Wednesday 28th April
Canberra Theatre, Canberra
Tickets: Canberra Theatre Centre

Thursday 29th April
Thebarton Theatre, Adelaide
Tickets: Ticketmaster

Friday 30th April to Saturday 1st May
Perth Comedy Festival, Perth
Tickets: Perth Comedy Festival