Day: January 22, 2008

Chappelle’s four hours at the Cellar

Someone told Radar magazine that Dave Chappelle dropped in at the end of Sunday night’s show at the Comedy Cellar to extend the night another four hours. I didn’t make it this time to see for myself. Two problems (man, oh, man, I’m full of cantankerousness recently)… 1) Why again with the super-long stand-up sets? I’m all for hanging with Chappelle nonstop and enjoying his hilarious riffs on anything and everything, but in a club setting? 2) This one digs at me even more. Radar’s Neel Shah must not know much about comedy because he starts his report this way: "Patrons of New York’s Comedy Cellar who waited out a bunch of amateur yucksters…" Really? Amateur yucksters?!?! Do you have that much disdain for stand-up comedy, Mr. Shah (here I channel my inner Shecky Magazine), that anyone who’s not Dave Chappelle is an amateur? And yuckster? Nice double dig, there. Yuck, indeed. FYI, you don’t get on the bill at the Comedy Cellar if you’re an amateur. It’s all pros. And mostly national headliners with massive TV credits. Is Saturday Night Live‘s Darrell Hammond an amateur yuckster? Dave Attell? Nick DiPaolo? Jim Norton? Argh. Head hurts from reading drivel such as this. Tonight’s so-called "amateur" lineup at the Comedy Cellar includes Darrell Hammond, Kevin Brennan, Elon Gold, Robert Kelly, Marina Franklin, Dan Naturman, Sherrod Small, James Smith, Dave Attell,...

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Do they get Google in Dallas?

Something about this review of Jeff Dunham in Monday’s Dallas Morning News made me stop and think before continuing to read onward. Actually, several somethings. Starting from the first words, actually. "Jeff Dunham’s rare and exquisite comedy…" (italics mine). OK. Exquisite is certainly a word a reviewer can use at his or her discretion and I cannot quibble with that, per se. Rare, though? Not sure how Dunham’s ventriloquism is exactly rare, but, eh, let’s move on to the next sentence. "He’s one of three ventriloquists, all from Dallas, who have only recently invaded the national consciousness." Italics again are mine. Now we’ve got some quibbling to do. Terry Fator, who won NBC’s America’s Got Talent and its $1 million prize, wasn’t exactly a household name before appearing on the show, but millions of people already were more than familiar with both Dunham and Jay Johson. By the way, the reviewer in the next paragraph describes Dunham this way: "Mr. Dunham’s mark of distinction is that he’s easily one of the funniest stand-up comics alive." How he’d do that with only recently invading our consciousness is something, indeed. But Dunham has been packing comedy clubs and theaters for several years. I recall seeing him sell out a full weekend at a club six years ago, and even then, he had rabid fans lining up — with their own puppets...

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