High Maintenance // Matilda from Janky Clown Productions on Vimeo.
NBC has an exclusive deal in the States to show the Olympics. Right now, as I write this, the Olympic Opening Ceremonies are happening live in Sochi. I just learned that there is a country called Dominica, which is geographically close to but not the same as the Dominican Republic. Cool fact! But it's the kind of cool fact I had to learn through a garbage bootleg BBC stream originating in Estonia or Mars or something because NBC is waiting another eight hours to show the Opening Ceremonies. (Right now, NBC is airing the Steve Harvey [...]
Not long ago, MTV made an unusual appeal: It asked for help finding information about one of its own shows. The show was "Buzzkill," a hidden-camera program that ran in 1996. The plea came from MTV's Guy Code blog:
If you try to find old clips online, they're nonexistent. Seems impossible, right? The web is where you can find the most obscure remnants of every era, the most disturbing videos the human mind can conjure. And yet it has seemingly been scrubbed clean of all "Buzzkill" details…. Internet, we need your help. We must uncover the truth of "Buzzkill." Send us your tips and clues. Better yet, if you [...]
In the 1950s, a DJ named Jean Shepherd hosted a late-night radio show on New York's WOR that was unlike any before or since. On these broadcasts, he delivered dense, cerebral monologues, sprinkled with pop-culture tidbits and vivid stretches of expert storytelling. "There is no question that we are a tiny, tiny, tiny embattled minority here," he assured his audience in a typical diatribe. "Hardly anyone is listening to mankind in all of its silliness, all of its idiocy, all of its trivia, all of its wonder, all of its glory, all of its poor, sad, pitching us into the dark sea of oblivion." Shepherd's approach was summed up by [...]
"Our lazy embrace of Stewart and Colbert is a testament to our own impoverished comic standards. We have come to accept coy mockery as genuine subversion and snarky mimesis as originality. It would be more accurate to describe our golden age of political comedy as the peak output of a lucrative corporate plantation whose chief export is a cheap and powerful opiate for progressive angst and rage."
Here’s the problem: this side of the Atlantic is unaware of Victoria Wood. Queen of observational stand-up, master of the cheerful monologue ridden with a thousand little dreads, goddess of the sketch surreal and regular, authoress of so much women-centered content that she out-Bechdels the Bechdel Test by a mile, unsentimental teller of truth in matters sexual, superb chronicler of Englishness, trail-blazer (she’d hate this title, but I don’t give a damn), tea drinker, owner of the most glorious bosom in the whole of Commonwealth.
Yet Britain’s much loved, awarded and televised, the Royal Albert Hall-selling-out, multi-talented comedic performer and writer could easily visit any North American city in [...]
If perhaps you were intrigued by the idea of podcasts by comedians but you aren't interested in living in a male-only world, as Paul Brownfield, the author of this past weekend's Times mag piece on podcasts by comedians does, here are a few things for you to explore!
• In the print version of the magazine, but not online, How Was Your Week?, by Awl pal Julie Klausner, got tied for his final pick. That's… nice that it got a mention! It's very good. Perhaps you will enjoy, if you can stand the fact that Julie doesn't have a penis.
• There is also the podcast of [...]
Sure, there are funny gays in various entertainment fields, such as shoe design and Condé Nast magazines, but let us think of gays in actual comedy. Okay, so there's Ellen. That guy ANT. Neil Patrick Harris. And… hmm.
Oh right. Scott Thompson. And Graham Chapman, of Monty Python. These two might prove a comedy "rule" that gays are often funny when in groups of straight people. Or when they are English: Stephen K. Amos, Simon Amstell, Matt Lucas, Julian Clary, Paul O'Grady. And Kenny Everett and Frankie Howerd and Kenneth Williams, RIP! Or when they are of an English province: Trey Anthony, say, from Canada. And Tommy Sexton. And [...]