Celebrating public figures with humour

Martin Pombili and his passion for comedy

02 August 2019 | Art and Entertainment

With over 30 000 followers on Instagram, comedian Martin Pombili's social media pages are becoming the go-to sites for laughter and entertainment. He describes comedy roast as a phenomenon in which one particular person is joked about and made fun of by a comedian. “It is not a new phenomenon other countries, but it is relatively new in Namibia. In other countries it is usually done in front of an audience.

“Because of how small our industry is, my audience is found online, and I just prefer it that way for now,” he said. He makes fun of celebrities' characters from their dress sense, the way they speak and their overall behaviour. “Public figures, especially those in the entertainment scene have a lot of personalities so through celebrity roast I get to make fun of certain fractions of their personalities,” said Pombili.

He shared that the Namibian entertainment scene can be too serious sometimes and he plans to make it more exciting through his comedy. He stated that when he started he used to mostly make fun of their looks, but clarified that that does not mean they are ugly. “I was actually surprised by how my comedy was embraced not just by my followers but the entertainers I make fun of too. For me, that is an indication that there is a market for my art and it motivates me to even do more videos of this kind,” he said.

He pointed out the roast he did on DJ Seboa as his favourite so far because of the attention and traffic it garnered. Besides being a comedian, Pombili is also an events host and a first-year law student at the University of Namibia. “This entertainment industry is ours and it is up to us to introduce new and exciting things to make it more fun.

“Namibians have a culture of not appreciating our celebrities. I want to make it okay to be a fan of a celebrity and not feel awkward about it; I do not do this for fame, it is truly my passion,” he said.

Pombili added that his videos have opened doors for him in the entertainment scene that he did not envision when he started his page.

“Because of my relatively strong following on social media, I get approached by different artists and brands to promote their music, shows and other entertainment-related projects,” he said, adding that he is the brand ambassador for Lahlit clothing line.

MICHAEL KAYUNDE