Author: Sean L. McCarthy

Anthony Clark, post-Last Comic Standing

Anthony Clark used to be a regular New Year’s Eve fixture at the Comedy Connection in Boston (NOTE: This year’s NYE slot is going to none other than ANDREW DICE CLAY!!??!?!?!?). Anyhow. Now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, time to let Clark get some things off his chest. Clark wasn’t in the best of moods when he called. "One of my friends got rolled in San Diego," he said. "His face looks like hamburger. He’s going to be OK, but he shouldn’t be going to 15 bars in three hours in a shadow outfit." Shadow outfit? Oh, right. It was the weekend before Halloween. Was Clark going to play dress up? "No. I hate Halloween. It’s a nightmare. The traffic here in Hollywood is terrible. You can’t go anywhere. People are throwing eggs…I like Thanksgiving. When you eat. Football, alcohol and food. Now that’s a holiday." What about the Boston New Year’s Eve Connection gigs? He said he loved the money, but is OK without it, just being back on the road in his return to his stand-up roots. "I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have a career. I’ve done 12 movies. I’ve been on Broadway in a Tony Award-winning play…Grapes of Wrath, with Gary Sinese…sitcoms…also stand-up. It always seems like there’s something out there to do. Each one of those are very different." "I think I love...

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What’s inside the mind of Mencia, anyhow?

Carlos Mencia’s “The Punisher” tour comes to Boston tonight for two shows at the Orpheum, where he’ll undoubtedly learn that in this town, “beaner” means something else entirely. The comedian formerly known as Ned Holness and I talked on the phone on Monday morning. His Comedy Central show, Mind of Mencia, finished its second season this summer as the network’s second most-popular program, and will return for a third season early in 2007. It was before 9 a.m. when the phone rang. Mencia was ready and rarin’ to start talking. “I’m wired,” he said. He tried watching the “Star Wars” trilogy (Eps. 4-6) and “Angel” but still couldn’t relax. “I was watching ‘Charmed,’ and I said I suck, watching ‘Charmed’ in the middle of the morning and paying attention to the storyline.” He kept getting distracted by Alyssa Milano. “Maybe because I remember her as a little girl, it makes me fell dirty.” OK. Let’s talk about something else. He just celebrated his 39th birthday on Oct. 22. How was that? His tour was in Dallas that night. “My wife came out,” he said. “They stopped the show, came out with a cake, sang Happy Birthday, and my whole vibe was, you’re ruining the show! Get the f— off my stage! You’re building a set, you’ve got these peaks and valleys…and then, bababababa! What the f— are you guys...

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TrendSpotting: Demetri Martin

Demetri Martin called me from Orlando, Fla., where he had just awoken from a post-Epcot slumber. Then again, he deserved a nap. As he told me, "We walked through 10 countries, around a lake. A lot of travel." Martin’s stand-up comedy tour comes to Boston on Saturday — that’s tonight, my friends, at the Berklee Performance Center. He’s happy about that. Not so happy to learn he’s here the same night and time as Denis Leary’s Comics Come Home. "So I’m basically fighting their cause? S—, that’s too bad. Maybe there’ll be some people who are against them, so they’ll come see me," Martin told me. Lots of people are quick to try to compare Martin’s dry delivery to either Steven Wright or Mitch Hedberg. Certainly, a few of Martin’s initial jokes on his new CD/DVD, These Are Jokes, sound Hedbergian in tone, subject matter and cadence. But who else would think to "remix" their jokes with glockenspiel? Or introduce an interpreter (in Martin’s case, Leo Allen)? On one joke in particular, though, I thought of another stand-up, my friend and Martin’s friend, Val Kappa. The joke has Martin describing how he got his hair cut especially for the show, and told the stylist what he wanted, "but it must’ve come out, gay Beatle please!" I could just hear Val saying that in just that way. Only, as I...

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Denis Leary on the 12th Comics Come Home

Right before jetting off on vacation last weekend, I managed to get Denis Leary on the phone to talk up Comics Come Home, which returns to Boston for a 12th year Saturday to raise money for the Cam Neely Foundation. Some of my interview got Tracked up today (observant Boston Herald readers should spot which paragraphs have been translated into Track-ese), so here is the full story… Last year, Leary opened Comics Come Home with a videotaped clips package recounting the many flubs of President Bush. Knowing that last month, Leary and his band debuted a Mel Gibson song, I wondered what he might have up his sleeves this time around. "Actually, we’re opening up with an expanded version of the Mel Gibson Blues, which also has an extra verse based on Mel’s interview with Diane Sawyer," Leary told me. "It’s not a tribute, because we all know the man and his background. I think everybody needs to single him out and know what he’s thinking about." "Every year, we try to do something that coincides with the number for the show," he said. "For No. 9, we had (Bruins legend) Johnny Bucyk alive and there, and then we had Ted Williams’ head in a bucket from the freezer. We thought 12, that’s the number of the apostles, which is the name of our production company…I think people are...

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D.L. Hughley on Studio 60

I had the pleasure of spending some quality time last night with D.L. Hughley, one of the Original Kings of Comedy, and a star of NBC’s new hourlong drama (?), Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. Hughley and I had talked on the phone earlier yesterday, some of the results of which you can read here. Hanging out with him in the green room of the Comedy Connection, though, you truly get a sense of how focused and balanced this guy is — listening to him talk logically and eloquently about Iraq, North Korea, Darfur, education, health care, then watching him get up, walk onstage and deliver another hour-plus (and the plus can be plussss, depending upon how much crowd work Hughley feels like putting in) of laughs. He also was quite honest and forthright about how he views his current primetime network TV opportunity. Everyone is bringing their A games to the table, he said. When I asked him earlier if he has gotten to the point yet where he wants to stand up during a table read and yell, "Don’t you know I’m an Original King of Comedy," Hughley knew to instinctively fill in the "God Damnit!" I had on my screen but didn’t say. "What’s funny is, it’s about comedy," he told me. "Comedy is something people, to their detriment, all think they’re experts. They all...

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