Monday, October 29, 2007

"Leave Him Alone, He's Retarded!"

Jesus Christ what a fucking show. For an overview, I'm going to be lazy and quote Brooklyn Vegan:

"From Sound Fix, I hopped on the L-Train to check out the second of two Comedians of Comedy shows at Irving Plaza. Comedians of Comedy is the one show I look forward to more than any other on the planet. And with the fear in the back of my head that this might be the last CoC tour, I enjoyed this show with maximum relish. It was one of those shows that made me feel so lucky to live in NYC as we were treated to easily the best line-up of the entire tour. The line-up included Patton Oswalt, Brian Posehn, Maria Bamford, Eugene Mirman, David Cross, Aziz Ansari, John Mulaney, Jon Glaser and Jon Benjamin, and Heather Lawless. From start to finish, the show was absolutely rock-solid. Even when some douche-nozzle had the balls to heckle Maria Bamford, the show never lost its momentum. As a matter of fact, that heckler probably added to the show's velocity as the subsequent comedians worked destroying said heckler into their routines."

Usually I prattle autobiographically, like I would, in this case, about first discovering and falling in love with (literally falling in love with, I'm weird) Maria Bamford back in 2000, or realizing Brian Posehn was actually a comedian and not just that guy from "Just Shoot Me" in '03, or becoming obsessed with the hyper-literary and overall awesome Patton Oswalt in '04. Or how I watch the Comedians of Comedy tour movie whenever it comes on Showtime. Or how much I loved "Ratatouille" Naw, I won't do that.

But I will jizzstain the e-walls about how ridiculously great of a tour package this was, and how much I love comedy. Sadly, I missed last year's show, which featured Zach, because I believe I was at Celtic Frost or something equally boring and overpriced. So I had a whole year of stanned-out anticipation, plus I copped both of Patton's albums (I had gone to Soundfix to see his free show back in August, but his set seemed to have started an hour earlier than advertised so I had to make do standing around listening to his set on the PA with 30 other people while the packed Williamsburg record store back room were privy to his genius.)Brian's and Maria's, which all added up to make me hopelessly rabid about the show on Saturday. I rarely give this much of a shit about anything, with the exception of recent Hives (forgot to do a post, but suffice to say, fucking ridiculously good, despite the new songs not being that great) and Daniel Tosh appearances and the upcoming Dillinger/Genghis Tron and Ghostface/Rakim dates.

So I bought my tickets maybe three weeks ago, expecting the show to sell out, despite forgetting it'd be on the second night of Halloween weekend parties and that NYC sucks in terms of appreciating how much cool shit we get. I posted constant Facebook reminders so I wouldn't have to go alone, but luckily my more-bearded half Christian made it.

The lineup is riggodamndiculous as always. Patton and Maria alone are laser-sharp and brilliant, but to throw in Mirman, Glaser, Cross, and Posehn is just a free happy ending after a hard day cleaning up debris at Ground Zero. The atmosphere was really weird, since rock show venues always feel unrestrained (at least the good ones) and comedy clubs in NY instill this weird authoritarian vibe to the audience, instructing everyone subtly to tow the line or else get thrown out and not get a refund for your overpriced drinks.

Much like the Original Kings of Comedy (who I also love, although DL Hughley is not funny, nor are most BET circuit/mainstream comedians) Patton did 10-15 minutes sets opening, closing, and dividing the show, while meanwhile being MC and introducing comedians. The guy fucking killed, as usually, and its a shame my memory is so awful that I can't hilariously quote him here. Next up, was Heather Lawless, who I knew was going to be really weird by how exuberantly she was introduced by Patton. And she was really fucking weird. Her style was great because it made the entire audience uneasy, you could never really get into a typical comedian-audience rhythm and she peppered in great jokes in a soup of rambling. She also had this great southern accent and habit of repeating jokes again in the middle of quitting her relating punchlines.

Next, if I remember right, was John Mulaney, who I know from "Best Week Ever", and also from not being funny on "Best Week Ever". Surprise, surprise, he's actually really good. He did a great bit about being at a shitty Queens train station at night and having a woman give him an over-the-shoulder look, thinking he might be a predator, and walking quicker, leading him to think the train was coming and chasing her all the way down. He also has this weird habit of sounding like a 1920's detective when he talks. It's slight, but noticeable.

Then Maria came out. I've never seen any of these guys live before, but I'm a fan of most of them. But my longest history is with Maria, who came out is a really pretty dress and proceeded to destroy. The woman is ineffable live. Also, as lovable insane as she seems, it's magnified by 1000 live. I wished she had done "Old McDonald had a Pterodactyl", but her set is flawless and sharp regardless. Now, like Brooklyn vegan said, she got heckled, which was odd, by a guy who yelled "Keep working!" in reference to a joke she made seconds before about working on material. She played it cool and got back at him and finished her set strong, but for the rest of the night, the guy got stove-raped by Patton, which was great.

Aziz Ansari, who isn't really funny yet but clearly is on his way to hitting a peak in his late 20's/early 30's like most comics, came next I think, and did a pretty average set that, as usual, is more notable for his premises than being funny, which translates well to "Human Giant", a clip which of was played at the end of his set to everyone's approval. David Cross followed, which was rough considering a few youtube interviews I've seen where he basically admitted he's really rusty and needs to get back into form, which was true. he was easily the worst comic, despite coming out to the hugest applause out of everyone there. I love David, I love Mr.Show and Arrested Development and have pirated both his record two years ago, but it was a combination of him being out of practice, not having great material, and being the kind of comedian that isn't functional without really good jokes to fill out being so conversational and not having a real delivery.

Next was this giant mindfudge, Wonder Showzen style, that was Jon Glaser's set. I don't remember ever even hearing his comedy, but when he DID come out to do a Glinger at the end, his control of the crowd and stage presence were ridiculous. He came back out for the other Kaufmann-esque crowdfuck point in the show, when he, Jon Benjamin from Adult Swim, and two other comedians performed a 15 minute electronica set in redneck attire in Boston accents as "The Perfect Storm".

Eugene Mirman was up next, and I'm not really familiar more than passingly with him, but the criticism of his set I think applied. I remember shopping for I think Patton's "222" album on Amazon and seeing a review of Eugene Mirman that summed him up: He's "weird" and out there like Emo Phillips (Though Emo is really fucking funny), but really inconsistent. Christian was really disappointed by Eugene, but I was just bummed I didn't think fast enough so I could get him to make me a sandwich. Another kind of inconsistent guy, Posehn, was second to last, though I do really like the jokes he does that ARE funny. His ratio is about half and half and his album was one of the few comedy records I downloaded (Besides an old Louis CK album and Bill Hick's "Arizona Bay") that I butchered and deleted a lot of. Posehn is always okay, but he usually makes up for it in other places and in being identifiable with, like Patton. His "Ratatouille" joke segueway into Patton moping out with a sad face and retreating when complaining about the end of "The Departed" was a classic moment

Speaking of, he closed the set, after a great 2 hours and 45 minutes of comedy, and interacted really intimately with the crowd and improvised, managing to doing, besides one joke from his albums, an all new set. I can't gush about the guy enough, he's amazing, by far the best working comedian alive. So, we got our nearly three hour treat as the late show, then went home to dream about KFC Famous Bowls and Maria Bamford's booger.

And for fanboy sake, the Comedians of Comedy 2007, from best to worst:
1. Oswalt
2. Bamford
3. Glaser
4. Mulaney
5. Posehn
6. Lawless
7. Benjamin/Perfect Storm
8. Mirman
9. Ansari
10. Cross

Now for Galifianakis to come back.


josephlovesit said...

What a couple of hilarious, inbred-looking mother fuckers. I just saw these dudes on Thursday at their Comedians of Comedy show. Patton's most definitely my favorite comedian right now. Anyone that can spin a mention of 'The Wire' into a joke about mountain men is top notch in my book. You a fan, Christopher?

Christopher said...

Totally. This is actually a placeholder for later today, since I should get some sleep because I'm a fucktard that stays up hours past when I should, but I saw then Saturday night. Riggoddamndiculously great.

And Patton is the best working comedian anywhere alive. Retardedly good. And literary and geeky to boot!

But I have a show post coming up with more girly spewing of how awesome Patton and Bamford are.

josephlovesit said...

Fuck, I'm envious. You got to see so many great comics (I dream of seeing Glaser live). And nearly 3 hours of Patton? shit, that's amazing. I completely agree with all your analysis's on the individual comedians. Impeccable taste you have!