Day: February 16, 2010

New York comedy scene’s March Madness just got twice as mad; contests at Comix and Carolines?

From 2007-2009, Carolines devoted one night per week in March to its own form of "March Madness" as 64 stand-up comedians paired off in timed competitions before a live audience. That's happening again this coming March, with one major difference. The guys who brought "March Comedy Madness" to Carolines — Bryan Kennedy and Josh Filipowski — have taken their act down from Broadway and Times Square to Comix comedy club in the Meatpacking District. But that's not stopping Carolines, who announced dates for its own "Final Four" competition next month. One part comedy nerd drama, one part good old fashioned business war! It's on. March Comedy Madness at Comix starts on March 10 and winnows its field from 64 down to four over the course of four Wednesdays. Last year's "Elite Eight" finalists got automatic invites to return (for reference, Myq Kaplan won this contest in 2009 at Carolines, with Reese Waters and Julian McCullough its previous winners), and online votes at Like2Laugh help determine the rest of the field. Host/referee Bryan Kennedy talked a little bit about it after an open call at Comix last month: As for the Carolines "Final Four," it starts on March 2 and takes place over five consecutive Tuesdays. It'll be hosted by Josh Spear, and its field of 64 also was collected via open call auditions. Here's a quote from the Carolines press release...

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FX pushes “Louie” into June, so April Fool’s!

The Wrap reported today that FX Networks has decided to push the launch date for Louis CK's new comedy series, Louie, from April 1 to an unspecified date in June, allegedly so it can coincide with the next season of Denis Leary's Rescue Me as its lead-in. The FX site for Louie, which had been playing a promo clip, also appears to be done for the moment. Which means that April Fool's Day launch really was a bit of a joke. Louis CK just taped about an hour of stand-up and several scenes yesterday at the Comedy Cellar in NYC for the series, which is looking more and more like our 21st century dream of a more realistic Seinfeld. (The Wrap) UPDATED: Here's a quote and brief explanation from FX in a press release on the matter. Plus, note that Louie will air at 11 p.m. instead of 10 p.m. now. Ready, set, read! ‚ÄúLouie is a brilliantly funny and original series, and we are excited by the critical response to the show,‚Äù said John Landgraf, President and General Manager, FX Networks. ‚ÄúEven though it is a drama, Rescue Me has always been regarded as one of the funniest shows on television and it will provide an outstanding, compatible lead-in for Louie. We successfully used Rescue Me as a lead-in for the majority of the first season of It‚Äôs Always Sunny...

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HBO offers free previews this week of The Ricky Gervais Show, Life & Times of Tim

If you do not subscribe to pay cable's HBO network, or even if you do, but cannot wait until Friday to see the animated debut of The Ricky Gervais Show, or the second-season premiere of Life & Times of Tim, for that matter, well, no worries, friends. For a sneak peek at the first half-hour of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant taking the Pilk out of Karl Pilkington as cartoon characters, just point your Internet to this page on iTunes and download this week's episode for freebies. UPDATED 2/18! HBO has put it up on YouTube, too. Watch it here: And if you'd like to see this week's return of Tim and his awkward animated adventures, well, the grown-up kids at CollegeHumor have an exclusive hosting page where you can watch that. Right now, if you'd like. That's the news, and I am...

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In other comedy news…or, while I was asleep at the wheel of this blog

Sometimes you have to take a step back before you can take a step forward. OK, now take a step back. Now take a step forward. Now take a step back. Take a step forward. And we're doing the cha-cha. I'm a Real Genius, this kid. You don't have to be a real genius, however, look out segues, to realize that it was a long and kind of weird holiday weekend, when it starts with the TV news showing you a guy die horrifically over and over again, then have a very Canadian Winter Olympics opening ceremony, the NBA All-Star weekend, Daytona 500, Valentine's Day, President's Day, and then realize that the only thing sillier than having big-idea rocket scientists like TED complain about having Sarah Silverman entertain them with her sassafras after they've hired her — the only thing sillier — would be to have a famous Hollywood filmmaker fly coach on a discount airline and complain about it, and have that make national news. That's when you know you picked the right weekend to take a step back from the Internet. So. What did we miss? Here are some links to other things that happened in comedy while I was asleep at the wheel last week… Vanity Fair interviewed Brian Posehn and Steve Agee from Sarah Silverman's Comedy Central program. (Vanity Fair) If you'd like to learn...

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