Hannah Gadsby is a queer icon, which is why I spent my entire 5-minute press junket slot telling them about my girlfriend.
But listen, it didn’t come out nowhere: Gadsby’s new Netflix standup special, “Something Special,” revolves around the comedian’s recent marriage to producer Jenney Shamash, who they affectionately refer to as “Jenno.” Aware as I am of the complex cultural exchange between our two countries, I had to get the scoop. As an autistic American Jew dating an Australian, I needed to know what it was like for Gadsby, an autistic Australian dating an American Jew. I told them about Boronia Boys, they told me about the Cate Blanchett Tim-Tam commercial. And we were off to the races.
INTO: My burning question for you is—I have an Australian girlfriend. And I’m American—so I was wondering what percentage of your relationship with Jenno is you explaining Australian culture?
HANNAH GADSBY: A lot.
We miscommunicated quite a bit as well. You know, as with all our extra syllables, and you with all your R sounds. I think Jenno has found it quite fascinating. You know, because we’re Australia is just we’re not as earnest as you. It’s a convict route. We began as a jail.
So I think that when you think of the colonization of America versus the colonization of Australia, I think was turned out exactly how you’d imagine it. Like, we hate ourselves and you probably love yourselves a bit too much.
I think we should hate ourselves more.
And we should love ourselves more. I think we can really learn from each other.
I think so too, Like my girlfriend recently showed me the film Chopper. And she was like “This movie is essential to understanding Australian culture.” And I was like Eric Bana? I did not know he was Australian.
I didn’t know Margot Robbie was Australian!
You give us your best people and then we then claim as our own! My girlfriend is also now on a on a mission to watch every low budget Australian film made in the early 2000s
Yes. There is a Tim Tam ad with Cate Blanchett in it.
Okay I’m writing this down. She’s also obsessed with this movie called Any Questions for Ben
Everyone’s so perplexed by this film, and she’s like, this is the problem with Melbourne. You can’t do it like a visual movie about it. She’s mad at me because I can’t tell the difference between Sydney and Melbourne. Even though she’s showed me so many movies of both.
One is sunny one is moody. I live in Melbourne now, but I’m from Tasmania, which is just not even on the map.
I mean, there’s so much going on. I now know what the Harbour Bridge looks like.
You had to get married to find that out?
I had to be in a relationship with an Australian!
…just to Google “Harbor Bridge?”
She showed me Starstruck, the Jo Kennedy movie. And she was just like: “there’s the harbor bridge. Harbor bridge. Harbor Bridge.”
Does she only communicate through film?
Well, I don’t live in Australia. So there’s a lot of media exchange. She shows me Boronia Boys and I show her some weird crap that I like. But yeah, I feel like you you can understand the cultural exchange better than most.
I showed Jenny “The Castle” and she showed me “Friends.”
I’m watching “Wentworth” now.
Oh wow. That’s an experience. I watched that during the pandemic.
Well I’ve taken up all your time talking about Chopper and mispronouncing Australian cities. But thank you.
Thank you! That was the best. I feel like you’ve got all the scoops!♦