Day: January 7, 2008

2008: The year of Tumblr?

Aziz Ansari has switched his blog to the newfangled hippity hoppity Tumblr format. Today we learn that Human Giant will have a best-of highlights reel from last year’s 24-hour MTV marathon included in its Season 1 DVD package that comes out March 4. That includes musical guests Mastodon, Ted Leo, The National, other guests Gbenga Akinnagbe, Fred Armisen, Will Arnett, Todd Barry, Michael Cera, Zach Galifianakis, Bill Hader, Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim, John Krasinski, Eugene Mirman, Bob Odenkirk, Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, Kristen Schaal, Leo Allen as the Comic with the Beard of Bees, Andy Blitz as Osama Bin Diesel, Jackie Clarke as the Standards Lady, Nick Kroll as Fabrice Fabrice, Craft Services Coordinator, Brett Gelman and Jon Daly as Cracked Out, Brett Gelman as Billy Crystal, Jon Glaser as Jim the Writer, Nick Kroll and John Mulaney as Paul’s Uncles Gil and George, Adam McKay as caller Alan Harkett, Rob Lathan as Quick Lips Lathan, Megan Neuringer as Sexy WebCam Girl, Patton Oswalt as the caller Douglas from Murfreesboro, KY, Rob Riggle as Cliff Carver, Head of Security, Andy Samberg and Jorma Taccone as the Leprechaun Brothers, Eric Slovin as the Leprechaun, and The Borat Army. Oh, and Human Giant is back hosting late Monday nights at the UCB in NYC. Tonight features Todd Barry and Jessi Klein and if you get in, it’s only via...

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Comedians vs. actual people

Whom do you prefer? Are they the same thing? I’ve often told friends and acquaintances that I much prefer associating with, hanging around and talking to comedians rather than actual people. As if comedians are not actual people. Well, they’re not. At least when you spend half of your life in journalism, a field in which your editors talk about "actual people" and "real people" as sources to be hunted down and recorded for historical purposes. Talking with a new friend who studies philosophy, though, I began openly exploring what my statement truly meant and what it might say about me. Why do I group myself with comedians as something separate from actual people? Perhaps it has much to do with the way we look at the world and how we choose to interpret it. We mock reality and the absurdities of life, entertaining the actual people who go about their daily routines as if they were drones, or as the appropriate phrase springs to mind, cogs in the infinite machine. That’s why actual people laugh at us. We wake them up with our words, our punchlines. We remind them how silly life is. How so many of the things people occupy their lives with is so trivial and banal, how so little of it truly matters in the end. How the material goods are merely larger examples of...

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Def Comedy Jam returns

While everyone was talking about Leno and Kimmel agreeing to go on each other’s shows to break the strike, or wondering how Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert would come back on the air, or buzzing about the return of The L Word, or how The Wire is the greatest show on TV ever (which is odd considering these folks were the same ones who kept saying this about The Sopranos, and you’ve never heard them mention The Wire before The Sopranos ended only six months ago), or even people talking about the New Hampshire primaries, you barely heard a word about the return of Def Comedy Jam. Well, Def Jam and comedy are back together again. And Russell Simmons reminded you with a throwback clip of Bernie Mac in 1991, with an outfit that made him look more like a Graffiti Train Conductor of Comedy than a future King of Comedy. But host D.L. Hughley set the tone early, with his tie and sweater and his jokes about the presidential campaign, that this wasn’t your older sibling’s Def Jam show. Or was it? The first comic, Damon Jr., as in Damon Wayans Jr., didn’t sound or look exactly like his father, but did show his youth with a very hacky, if well-executed act-out of a guy trying to masturbate to porn without completing during the close-up on a guy....

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