Listening to “Impregnated With Wonder,” the new stand-up comedy disc from Pete Holmes, provided one of the more truly enjoyable experiences I’ve had listening to new comedy CDs this year. How could it not be enjoyable when Holmes himself clearly is having so much fun onstage.
Throughout the 55-minute performance, joy bounces emanates from Holmes and bounces off of the live audience and back to him. The self-described “fun dad” but single guy may emerge from a bad dream screaming, “I’m a fat Val Kilmer!” The truth is, though, that he brings the best elements of Brian Regan, Paul F. Tompkins and the late John Ritter together into a package of nonstop happy goofball. Of course, most people who haven’t discovered Holmes as a comedian yet may simply think at first, “Isn’t that the voice of the E*Trade baby?”
Yes. Yes it is.
Just listen to the track “Pierce,” however. Pierce! Get beers! It’s pure silliness, amplified. “If you don’t do that in the shower tomorrow, you’re dead inside.” Holmes is right on the money.
The part of him that’s like PFT emerges right from the get-go, in which he acknowledges everything that’s happening in real-time in the room. “Let’s all just relax and enjoy what’s happening in a real way,” he tells the audience.
You could imagine Regan coming up with a bit such as “Non Fiction” or “Really,” but Holmes makes the material his own, whether he’s portraying himself or other people as dumb knuckleheads, debunking a magician’s act or making bad obvious “jokes” in everyday social interactions. In the end, Holmes realizes: “It’s me. I’m making fun of myself. I’m that guy.”
Holmes also tackles the observational humor of our day, seeing how technology and social media has irrevocably changed us as people. You can witness this through his bits about Google and Facebook, which he demonstrated in multiple appearances on Conan.
Holmes has seen his comedy career take him from Chicago to New York City and now Hollywood, where he has taken writing jobs for TV sitcoms such as Outsourced and I Hate My Teenage Daughter. I hope and trust you’ll buy “Impregnated With Wonder” so you can discover Holmes for yourself and get him some better gigs for years to come.
Sample tracks below: