Thursday, July 3, 2008

My Five Cents: Last Comic Standing Season 17...

Who even knew this show was still on!? Well, apparently the good folks at On Demand did because they thought it was smart to buy the season from NBC for all of the diehards who have better things to do on a Thursday night than sit home and wait for this to pop on... you know, all five of us.
I personally love stand-up comedy. Always have, always will. I have never laughed so hard tears have started streaming out of my eyes more than when catching a Robin Williams or Chris Rock special on HBO or Comedy Central. Last Comic Standing then should have been a goldmine for me-- a chance to learn about up and coming comedians who I'd want to check out at the Laugh Factory or UCB or whereever. And at times, it was: it brought me Kathleen Madigan, Alonzo Bodden, Chris Porter, and Michele Balan. I was willing to overlook the few (ahem, Doug Benson) who clearly had moderate success but were still put forth past the semi-final rounds because I was convinced the return would be great. But sadly, the show buried some of its greatest talent just as the network buried the show in the middle of the summer with few promos. Last week was the first round of semi-finals on this season (which is actually only (?) the sixth), and it showed great promise (Jeff Dye, Ron G, Erin Jackson and Andi Smith)... but then Bill Bellamy announced who actually made it through, and to quote NPH, it was "a sausage fest" in there. Not one woman made it through. A woman won the last season of The Biggest Loser, and a woman just won this season of Top Chef, so surely it should be a woman’s time to shine on Last Comic Standing, no?

Now, I'm not saying they should pass a woman through if she isn't as funny as the men she is competing with; affirmative action doesn't work when an audience who has to be entertained is involved. However, even if every other one deserves to get the boot, it was only because Shazia Mizra blew them all out of the water. But she didn't make it. Neither did Erin or Andi, and though I admit I need to hear a bit more from Andi (hard to pass a judgment on three minutes, especially when the show... trims some comedians' sets), Erin was certainly funnier than Paul Foot, a stringy haired Mr. Bean, and God's Pottery, who we've seen three times, and thus far they've performed the same one song about virginity over and over. My jaw actually dropped as an audible "Aw, hell naw!" spilled out of my lips.

Tonight we had a few more funny women (the stoned Mary Mack, the banking on stereotypes Esther Ku, and Iliza Shlesinger, who, if editing is to be believed, got the hardest laughs of the whole group) and some only okay guys (Dan Cummins, who is the Oliver Stone of stand-up, putting the emphasis on the exact word he finds to be the "funny point" of the joke, lest you miss it; Sean Cullen, who did like twenty minutes (or two) of "What Happens In Vegas," chanting and then sang about porn (he actually has a decent voice and maybe should go for America's Got Talent instead; and Stone & Stone, another duo who resued the same jokes from multiple episodes past and who I never personally found funny). There was a much smaller percentage of women who even made it to these semi-final rounds than men, so I guess it's just basic math that fewer would get to take the next step, but to put it bluntly, it still sucks. I mean, really, the Lurch-looking dude with the giant cello? Really? At least Iliza made it or one of us would have had to cut a bitch (Bellamy)!

I admit Marcus is a genius for his impressions, and I'm glad to see him step outside the box and do some "regular" material, as well. He also looks like a less douchebaggy Dane Cook, so that doesn't hurt. While I would normally boycott LCS based on principle, let's face it, TV is slim pickins these days, and as long as there's some eye candy for me, I'm pretty much a guaranteed pair of eyes. NBC, you've been warned: assuming you're planning to fix the votes anyway, fix them in Marcus' favor or lose me much sooner into the season than the pitiful ratings can stand.


Chad Riden said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chad Riden said...

Mary Mack is way too funny to be on that show.