Christian Brighty: All aboard the good ship TikTok

Viral TikTok star Christian Brighty on the world of possibilities the video platform offers alternative comedians…

ICT Tac. The world cruise ship entertainment of online content. Mooring now to our beloved fringe. I’m sure some comics resent TikTok’s involvement in the fringe. And, to be fair, the partnership announcement couldn’t have been more muted. “Here, instead of our application, is a presentation of your work to people Most likely not in Edinburgh”. What a replacement.

But already the launch led to the adhesion of comics. Marcel Lucont for his fringe poster last year had his social media handles and then next to the TikTok symbol the words “fuck no”. He now has 38,000 subscribers.

I honestly think this is the perfect online storm for comics. Simply put, there are more people on TikTok watching content than posting it. The opposite of all other social media platforms. Stand-ups tend to upload clips of themselves live. Awesome – use it! But at this point, it’s just a marketing tool. What if it could be more? What if it could encourage true creativity?

Really, I don’t think the best TikTok has to offer is for stand-ups. I think TikTok is even better for weirdos.

Christian Brighty. Copyright : Ben Meadows

If you’re an alt-comedian reading this, I bet your character or performance character probably doesn’t exist on a stage. Unlike a stand-up, this is not their natural habitat. So why don’t you place your character in his real environment? You can build a whole world there. Alternative comics, TikTok is here FOR YOU.

My shtick is like TikTok period drama. I dress up as a bandit and rob people on my hobbyhorse. Or pretend to be a mysterious Mr. Darcy character, staring across the ballroom. I now own far, far too many Regency dresses. Through my videos I was able to develop story arcs, recurring characters – my own mini-sitcom. I have the most freedom and creative control I’ll ever have.

And it went pretty well, I think. I started in 2021, and I now have 430,000 people following me. I got 70 million views. The total watch time – such a flexible feature of TikTok – for my most-watched video is 7.5 years. I’ve wasted so much of humanity’s time. That’s a lot to answer in the next life.

But, more importantly, doing TikTok has dramatically improved my live work. I am a a lot best comedian now. There are things about it that would help any comedian – making new videos almost daily, getting feedback from an engaged audience. Attractive. But it’s not just a grind, it’s about how TikTok can help goofballs adapt.

When I started, I made one video a day for 30 days. And my videos were bad. Not completely confusing, just really confusing and inscrutable. If you are making a 15 second video, it should be clear. Or people will march. And by the end of that month, one of them had gone a bit viral. What a victory!

You can do whatever you want there. Whatever stupid idea you have. But you learn to modify it, just enough, to make it accessible to other people. My live work used to be full of flops and fails. I saw it as my superpower. There’s almost none of that in my first show. Because there are other things that I discovered. It’s weird to say that but I now love jokes! My show still has the clown games and the silly props. But TikTok teaches you how to make your work accessible enough that an audience can be brought into your dumb world.

And what’s wonderful is that the comics already do it! Today, prodigy Lorna Rose Treen has 16,000 subscribers. This is a huge achievement in itself. But it only started in April. By the end of the year, she’ll be over 100,000, making money from ads, and having a fanbase of people who come to see her shows.

Christian Brighty. Copyright : Ben Meadows

Tik Tok gave me the freedom to do whatever stupid idea I had that day. I like what I do. It’s a last attempt to hold on to my youth as I stumble into my 20s. I’m an honorary Gen Zer, I hope and I’ve decided. Of course, you can really back yourself into a corner where you end up forcing mutton chops in your face forever. But it’s a fun place, with beaches and stately homes and where you pee in a vest.

Before I started, I was so worried that I had missed the boat. That I was too late. But you haven’t even now. The boat is large and it is parked like the Cutty Sark. Jump on.


Christian Brighty: Playboy is at Pleasance Courtyard at 9:40 p.m. Aug. 3-28 (not Aug. 10 or 17). EdFringe.com