Taken from Metro, by Alice Harbourne.

Laura Daniel is drunk. It’s 10pm on a Thursday, and she’s celebrating her nomination for the 2016 Billy T Award. Glass of $12 bubbles in one hand, microphone in the other, the 24-year-old is too happy to take seriously performing a six-minute set to a crowd of mostly peers at Golden Dawn. She does a joke about how Listerine makes a great hair-of-the-dog for an in-denial alcoholic, drops and grinds a few times and exits with a “nailed it” flip of her Lorde-length hair.

It’s the first year since 2003 that more than one woman has been nominated for the comedy award (launched in 1997), and Daniel is rightfully jubilant. This is a chance to compete with four of New Zealand’s best emerging comedians without tiring talk of tokenism.

It’s a topic she’s bracing herself for ahead of the first season of TV3’s new sketch show, Funny Girls, and one I’m loath to bring up. Can we just get on with cheering Funny Girls and Jono and Ben producer Bronwynn Bakker for breaking the monotony of men otherwise dominating our screens?

That’s Daniel’s attitude, and navigating the show’s misguided title was the first task for the team of eight writers, comprised of the comedians and actors of Auckland cult improv show Snort.

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