So in my pursuit of seeing what is happening on the local comedy scene, I went to a comedy competition at Morty’s Comedy Club last night. A couple friends of mine were in the competition and it was cool to see a lot of talented newbie comics do their thing. Now, if you are unaware, the worst thing about comedy competitions is the audiences are usually awful. And this is because they are nice people that came out to support their own friend in the competition, so they try to suppress their own laughter for every other comedian. If you can get most of the crowd on your side at a show like this, well you have a shot at some success. My buddy Todd McComas won the thing last night and he completely should have because he killed with a group predisposed (and possibly premeditated) to not laugh at him.
The show started well with the owner/manager Chris Bowers hosting the thing, which I know to most comics sounds like a terrible idea. Here’s the strange thing, though, Bowers is really funny. Usually when the owner of the club does standup it’s an ugly thing to witness, but he’s great on-stage and has some really smart material. Good start, as I’ve seen too many comedy competitions not have someone to get the crowd sufficiently warmed up before the first competitor hits the stage. By the time Bowers got off-stage the room was ready, since there was 12-14 people in this quarterfinal…here is where the problem began.
I’m not sure why, but there were 4 people who did guest sets before the actual competition began. I’m guessing it is because Bowers is a really nice, supportive dude. The problem was by the time the actual contest started, it was 45 minutes into the show. Now for the guy who drew the first slot, this was great, which usually is a nightmare slot, but the people at the end hit the stage 2 and half hours into it. No comedy show gets better after 100 minutes. I have never seen it happen. Usually the peak is at around an hour and it starts to taper off at this point. This is why the feature spot on a regular show can be golden. I felt badly for the comics who were at the end because I’ve been there and unless you are Jim Carrey or Robin Williams, you aren’t going to be able to revive them after this type of comedy telethon.
The worst part of this for me (and I’m guessing everyone else) was that a couple of the pre-contest comics were a couple young dudes who claim they are doing a cross-country comedy tour that they are going to make into a film. So the first one of these guys goes up. His jokes were undeveloped, but he behaved like he thought he was the coolest guy on the planet. Complete poser. Did jokes about how some place outside of LA was filled with hicks. Come on dude, at least ask around to find out what redneck local place you are to hit when you (insert name) into this formula. Quite possibly the most annoying person I’ve ever seen on-stage. Oh, wait a minute, let me take that back…his friend comes up, who looks like almost like a carbon copy. It was like they went together to some stylist/life coach who promises to teach you to dress and behave like a total douchebag,. This guy was even worse than his buddy. I can’t even remember what he was trying to say for jokes, but there was nothing remotely funny about him. And let me add, plenty of open mikers aren’t funny, but to combine his total lack of comedy chops with the behavior of a complete self-absorbed asshole was a horrifying scene to witness.
Here is how I would describe them for those of you who weren’t there to witness these 2 pricks. They came off like a less-likeable, less motivated version of Patrick Bateman in American Psycho. Like Christian Bale did in the movies, these guys probably look at themselves in the mirror and flex while having sex—with each other.
For regular readers, you know this blog is not about dogging out other comics. I mean what purpose would it serve me? I promise you if I was going to shit on some other comic in print, I would choose someone famous who deserves it, not someone who is just starting out and is trying. For this reason, I will not mention either one of their names or what the name of their comedy tour project is called. (Here’s an idea, though, if you are a miserable amateur comic, don’t call anything you do a comedy tour.) The only reason I wanted to mention it at all was that these 2 guys were such wankers onstage that I hope someone that knows them will set up an intervention to keep them from getting onstage again and push them in a direction they are more suited for like internet scamming or investment banking.