Joe Rogan in transition

I think I know why Joe Rogan’s publicist wanted me to see his stand-up last weekend at the Comedy Connection. For those of you who haven’t seen Rogan perform before, know that he has a reputation for being one of the bluest of blue comics, coming out of the gate with raunchy material and never letting up. But on Friday night, at least, that wasn’t the Joe Rogan I saw and heard. This time, he opened with a bit about how much shock and awe he felt as the host of NBC’s Fear Factor. Sure, there is some profane language. But for close to an hour, Rogan’s act really was much more about the rise of stupid people — which reflects our interview from the year before — with his own takes on Noah’s Ark and the Egyptian Pyramids. Rogan also gave a shoutout to Newton South High School and showed off a hilarious impersonation of his longtime opening act, Joey Diaz. On this weekend, Diaz and Ari Shaffir (who’d show up in Rogan’s infamous video accusing Carlos Mencia of joke theft later), traded opening and middle slots. Diaz told the audience he’d gotten stoned right before his first-show set, and well, it showed. Ari, aka "The Amazing Racist," turned in some OK stuff for someone who bills himself as "The Amazing Racist."

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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