Arrowsmith’s sketch comedy show hits a number of targets - body and behaviour policing, the rise of homeopathy, beauty pageants, homophobia and natural disasters – but is particularly effective at highlighting the misogyny, hypocrisy and confusion involved in health messaging, and its effects on women.  The unending cycle Arrowsmith describes is not necessarily new, but definitely unfamiliar territory in the world of comedy: she talks about how media and marketing create a particular problem – a body part which doesn’t look right , for example – creates a marketable solution – a new product to solve this previously unproblematic problem – and then shames people into consuming. Once consumers, the cycle can start all over again, with new undiscovered problems, and new products to cure them. Unrelenting in her cynicism, Arrowsmith is focused in her critique and puts her characters in situations which, as happens with many consumers, it is nearly impossible to escape from. Everything That’s Wrong with the Universe promotes a more informed consumer, and a more questioning health advocate. (BL) 

EVERYTHING THAT’S WRONG WITH THE UNIVERSE, Gemma Arrowsmith, 5-31 August, Underbelly Med Quad. Venue is wheelchair accessible. Contact venue for other access questions. https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/everything-that-s-wrong-with-the-universe

More on Gemma Arrowsmith: http://gemmaarrowsmith.com/

On Women and Vitamin-Shaming: http://www.elle.com/beauty/health-fitness/news/a16962/multi-vitamins-dont-work/

On Homeopathy and the NHS: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2010/feb/25/homeopathy-nhs-costs-parliament