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Thread: When we last left off...

  1. #61
    Wild thang Rattus's Avatar
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    Re: When we last left off...

    Final thought on tonight's show (July 3) before I retire for the evening. If they had replaced Papa CJ and Louis Ramey with Dan Cummins and Eddie Pepitone, I would have been generally satisfied with tonight's finalists. But, per usual with this cursed show, I remain dissatisfied. Oh well, off to bed.
    All I wanted was a 45, a stinking 45 - the record or the gun. I'd even settle for the damn malt liquor. - Al Bundy.

  2. #62
    Premium Member dagwood's Avatar
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    Re: When we last left off...

    And I liked everyone tonight. Of course, Marcus is right on top of my list but I really liked the English man with the bass. Yeah, my brain is fried and I can't remember his name but the Titanic joke cracked me up.
    He who laughs last thinks slowest

    #oldmanbeatdown - Donny BB16

  3. #63
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    Re: When we last left off...

    Quote Originally Posted by dagwood;3102021;
    I really liked the English man with the bass. Yeah, my brain is fried and I can't remember his name but the Titanic joke cracked me up.
    Jim(?) Tavaré. I was so glad he made it through - he was hilarious. He is one of those exceptions I noted in my comments on last week's show with respect to the bang, bang, bang style of comicry as opposed to the more story-telling style.
    All I wanted was a 45, a stinking 45 - the record or the gun. I'd even settle for the damn malt liquor. - Al Bundy.

  4. #64
    Premium Member dagwood's Avatar
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    Re: When we last left off...

    Yeah, Jim Tavare. Thanks, my brain just could not come up with that, it was not in working mode last night.

    I am very glad the twins didn't make it through. I couldn't follow them. I liked that guy that did the WWII skit, until he brought the Japanese character into it. I agreed with Richard Belzer, it wasn't right. He stepped over a line.
    He who laughs last thinks slowest

    #oldmanbeatdown - Donny BB16

  5. #65
    pop culture whore pg13's Avatar
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    Re: When we last left off...

    Hello LCS remnants!

    My friend Marcus certainly wowed the crowd at the Paris that night, didn't he? He not only got a standing ovation for his performance (and, I have to admit, that his Willy Wonka bit is one of my favorites) but he also got one for his response to Steve Schirippa's pushing for him to do an impression (--which, and Marcus knows I feel this way, I'm disappointed by...because far too many people do Christopher Walken impressions. However, at least he never mentions "cowbells" when he does it.)

    I will give myself a microscopic pat on the back. In Marcus' Oompa-Lumpa song to Britney Spears...the very last line was originally different--but I gave Marcus the suggestion to change it to "I don't like the look of it", which is an actual line from the actual song from the movie.

    Tap, tap, tap. That's all, pg. Marcus did all of the hard work.


    Other random thoughts about the second semi-final show.

    **Once again, absolutely no pretense that there is any actual "contest rules" being adhered to...as you'd think there'd be some explanation as to why they took seven people from this semi-finals but only five from the first if it was an actual contest. Nope, it's just how a reality show gets cast. (A reality show that now more fully involves dressing its contestants up in embarrassing costumes, from the previews I've seen...)

    **Once again, if it WAS in any way a "contest", I'd want to complain about Bobby Baclava and Detective Munch being allowed to "judge" performers they've already seen. If there was any pretense to being fair, this would be unfair...but as there isn't, I should just ignore it and move on.

    **I have no idea who went up in what order--as I've been informed that they ARE editing the performances and showing some of them out of sequence...but, if Marcus actually did go up first and if Dan Cummins followed him, I give him props for slowing things down but still getting good laughs throughout his set. I like Dan a lot and, based on what NBC chose to show me, I thought he had a decent shot at moving on.

    **Performers have NO idea what might have been used from their previous daytime auditions or night time showcases--so, while the tv fan in me wants to criticize those performers who chose to do the same set, or even a chunk of jokes, each time--they would have no idea what had already aired...since these semi-finals shows were filmed months ago...before the show started to air.

    **Iliza Schlesinger reminds me...a little bit...of Tea Leoni. I'm not a huge fan (*see below), but I can't say that it's a crime that she moved on. After all, without her, this show would have a definite network television cleavage shortage. (Especially since they didn't go with Jackie Kashian...or Eddie Pepitone for that matter.)

    **...oh, Eddie... Here's the thing...Las Vegas is now a happy place and Eddie is not ever going to be a happy kind of guy. He works best when he can really unleash his edge...and he can't do that and be "network level likable" at the same time. Eddie will always be the sign holders' manager on "Flight of the Conchords"--and a person that I love watching work...but it's not surprising that he didn't win over the suits to make the show.

    **Go back to what I said about how it isn't "fair" that The Belz and Steve get to judge people they've already said they liked. AND, go back to when I said that I can't criticize performers for doing the same stuff they did on earlier shows. Thus, I'm conflicted about what to feel about Stone and Stone. Watching them with my bestest girl, I whispered "It seems like they only have five minutes of an act."

    **I have a friend named Hari Kondabolu who is a comedian--he was on Jimmy Kimmel last year. Hari recently made a short film called "Manoj" about an Indian-American comedian who is supposedly very popular because he makes really obvious observations on the stereotypes associated with his ethnicity...and the movie has Hari playing both Manoj AND himself (...and Hari's material is so much smarter than that...although, ironically, he gave "Manoj" a few of his earliest jokes...tellingly, they're jokes that worked really well with audiences.)

    Anyway, I feel like I'm watching Manoj Triumphant when I watch Papa CJ perform. I can tell that he's smart, but he's not presenting anything underneath the surface...there's no Papa CJ, there's just a flesh covered suit of stereotypes and easy observational references.

    I hope someone is TiVoing LCS for Hari so he can weigh in on this at some point.

    **Each performer has three minutes to perform...you've got to come out and hit your marks, get right into the funny. You can't take the temperature of the room, you can't ease an audience into your particular brand of comedy--things that comics are used to doing. And, heaven forbid you get your laughter from making the audience uneasy, uncomfortable or awkward--especially as the "celebrity talent scouts" keep talking about people looking comfortable and getting the audience on their side.

    In other words, this wasn't a battle that Mary Mack could win.

    **I really like Bob Biggerstaff. Some people seemed nervous (Iliza, for example) by all this stuff...Bob didn't. Bob just came out and did some jokes. Maybe that's the television producer reason to not move Bob on...there's no drama, no tension, no build up... Shame, as I bet he'd be funny in the house.

    **If this was a real comedy competition, then Louis Ramey would HAVE to be the favorite to win. He's this year's Ralph Harris, only with no reliance on character/voice/act-outs. He's a seasoned vet with time-(and audience)-tested material. He's not going to get nervous, he's not going to get caught up in any silly house politics, he's just going to come out each week and hit his marks and get his laughs. Beat that, impression boy!

    **If Marcus reads this, he'll send me a MySpace message about that last line I just wrote.

    **To which I'll reply this way: "With two standing ovations in three minutes on national television, dude...you've already won every argument we'll ever have."

    **So...if you have a "favorite to win this thing" list that includes Jeff Dye, Marcus and Louis Ramey...you probably have Sean Cullen to consider. The guy is incredibly talented--and he's had a lot of exposure already (on MADtv, on his own Comedy Central Presents)... The question will always be if his talents will translate to an audience in a short time. I wasn't certain if he was connecting with the crowd at the Paris on this night. Especially when he committed to giving up 2/3rds of his set to singing a song where the only joke was singing the word "porn" over and over again. But, that was simply a minor hurdle that he needed to overcome...he's got a lot more to give us, I'm sure.

    **I missed John Evans' set (as my beloved Mariners actually played well that night and I forgot to switch back to LCS in time)--was he any good?

    **I saw Heath Hyche's set, though. And while there were elements of inventiveness in this, I, too, was appalled by the "I so drunk" Japanese fighter pilot parts...and when I saw the reaction of Steve & Richard, I knew that Heath was in for a rough "Winston Spear-esque" ripping from them on national television.

    **...and then to follow it up with Esther Ku's rather weak racial stereotype-based material was one of those paradoxes that we live with in the comedy business. Belzer said it right--if you're one of 'em, you can joke about it...if you aren't, you can't. It's not fair, but that's part of the point.

    **What sucks though, is how willing the Las Vegas audience was to laugh at cheap stereotypes...no matter who was making them. That's, sadly, also typical.

    **I didn't think Esther had a good set...or, rather, I don't think those jokes are good enough for her to have had a good set. And her accent kept throwing me... I didn't understand why she might have an accent--and then I realized that she didn't have a Korean accent, it was an accent meant to help her seem goofy and dumb. I'd comment on that, but I remember Belzer's rule...that if you aren't, you can't.

    **I'd sooooooooooooo rather have had Jackie Kashian move on. The set she did this night wasn't her absolute best showcase set--but it was solid and full of everything that makes Jackie Kashian, Jackie Kashian... She showed that she's a seasoned vet, just like Louis Ramey...but somehow, it isn't enough for Jackie to move on. Instead of choosing Jackie, they chose the young, skinny, smiley Asian girl. Yep, who'd have thought that the girl who wears knee high boots and short school skirts gets to be seen more on television?

    **Pete Lee did fine...but I'd pick Dan Cummins over Pete Lee...and they didn't pick either of them.

    **And, I'm glad they chose Jim Tavare to move on. I think that he'd be funny even without the double bass...like many "guitar acts," it's a bit of a crutch to allow them a different pacing than other comics. It'll be interesting to see how funny Jim is on the fly in some of the challenges to come.

    I also appreciated that Jim came off the stage feeling like it hadn't gone as well as he'd hoped, calling himself "Dead Man Walking" to the camera. Better that attitude than the super-ego'd self-hype or ironic detachment that most everyone else dredged up.

    **I'm soooooooo tired of hearing reality show tv contestants who say either "I didn't come here to lose" or "I came here to win this". You might as well just open your mouth and let air escape without bothering to form words--BECAUSE YOU'RE NOT SAYING ANYTHING.

    And "not saying anything" can only work well once...and it already worked well for Amy Schumer. Try something else.

    pg--more nightmares for comics to come in the next couple weeks it seems...and I'll see the rest of you remnants here for commiseration afterwards--seattle

    (*--I'm a HUGE fan of Tea Leoni, actually. What I meant to say was that I'm not a huge fan of what I've seen of Iliza's stand-up so far...it seems a bit generic.)
    Last edited by pg13; 07-04-2008 at 10:39 PM. Reason: Needed to show more love to Tea Leoni.

  6. #66
    FORT Fogey
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    Re: When we last left off...

    Thanks pg.

    Since they are casting a reality house situation, their criteria is different and that is exactly why Esther moved on. Got that loud and clear. I thought her material was weak and her delivery nervous. I was very disappointed not to see Jackie move on. She would be great in the house. I do not sense that Esther is good at witty reparte. Dan Cummins is another, aw shucks, he would have been great, moment for me.

    I was stunned to see Sean make the cut. His song was just not funny and I sensed nervous laughter from the audience. I don't understand laughing at something that isn't funny unless you are the focus of the joke as that guy was.

    Thanks for putting it into words why Papa CJ falls short. His material is good so why the flat feeling?
    there's no Papa CJ, there's just a flesh covered suit of stereotypes and easy observational references.
    Have you ever met Mary Mack? I was curious if her personality was similar to her stage persona. Same thing with God's Pottery, since they stay in character.

  7. #67
    Wild thang Rattus's Avatar
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    Re: When we last left off...

    I, too, am not pleased by the continuation of Esther. In fact, I am developing a deeper, stronger repulsion almost daily for acts that are primarily ruminations on one aspect of the comic's being. I do not like to hear entire acts about being Asian/female/fat/gay/black/a mom/whatever. There are, as always, exceptions to this rule, but there aren't many people who can do a lengthy diatribe on the, oh say, black experience like Chris Rock can and actually make it not only funny, but at least semi-relevant to people who aren't black.
    All I wanted was a 45, a stinking 45 - the record or the gun. I'd even settle for the damn malt liquor. - Al Bundy.

  8. #68
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    Re: When we last left off...

    I am so happy to see some posting in here and I love when PG comments as I know he can read more into what we see.
    I just watched my DVR of the last semi final and once again, just didn't get it.
    I LOVED Mary Mack and thought she was far superior to Iliza and Esther. (I am assuming here that they want to fill a bit of female quotient) I never even got Esther moving on in the very beginning much less last night. I also thought that Dan Cummings should have moved on. And though I had heard the material before, I like the Stone brothers. I didn't think Sean Cullen was even worthy of a chuckle and I find Papa CJ both hard to understand and boring.
    Please NBC get it once and for all or this show will continue to die a slow death - those of us who watch want to see COMEDY - we don't give a rat's @$$ about drama in the house - we want FUNNY in the house. Why don't you get it??????

  9. #69
    pop culture whore pg13's Avatar
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    Re: When we last left off...

    Quote Originally Posted by shoepie;3105360;
    Thanks pg.

    Have you ever met Mary Mack? I was curious if her personality was similar to her stage persona. Same thing with God's Pottery, since they stay in character.
    I have indeed met (and worked with, however briefly) Mary Mack...and yes, she is very similar to her on-stage persona off-stage. I'm happy that she's received some attention for her work on national television. That said, I'm not surprised that she didn't move on in this "non-competition comedy competition."

    ...and I think I mentioned this before, but on another message board (one specifically for comedians and fans of a certain style of comedy), some people were calling Mary out for being a bit too much like Maria Bamford...and Maria, herself, came on the board to both make certain that people know that Mary isn't copying Maria...and to point out that Maria knows that Mary is definitely the person she projects herself to be on-stage.

    Which was a very cool thing for Maria to do...

    As far as God's Pottery goes, I have not actually met them in person...but I have had some contact with them on-line. (...and there's a joke about youth pastors and "contact" and "on-line" there, but I'll let you make it yourself.) In our conversations, while they remained up-beat, you could tell they weren't necessarily "in character."

    I know that I'm somewhat alone on this board in liking God's Pottery...but, like Belz & Steve, I've seen more of them in action than most of you...so, I'd already liked them before seeing them on this show. It's hard to put that aside--which is one of a million reasons why judging stand-up comedy is difficult.

    pg--Still taking requests, even though I stopped being a dj over five years ago...--seattle

  10. #70
    FORT Newbie smittyboise1's Avatar
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    Re: When we last left off...

    I'm almost at the point I don't want to watch...everyone I think is funny....they never pick....I thought Dan Cummins was pretty funny...and not many liked Pete Lee but I thought he was pretty funny......at least my fav for the show made it...Louis Ramey!!!!!!!

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