Evan Smith‘s KLRU series, “Overheard with Evan Smith,” is taking advantage of comic/actress Mary Lynn Rajskub‘s September stint at Cap City Comedy Club to get her into the studio for a taping.
Rajskub, a touring stand-up and Moontower Comedy Festival veteran best known for portraying hacker Chloe O’Brien on Fox television’s “24,” sits down with Smith at 3:45 p.m. on Aug. 28 (doors open at 3:15 p.m.). The taping takes place at KLRU’s Studio 6A, located on the east side of Guadalupe St. between 25th and Dean Keeton Streets.
Admission is free, but RSVPs are required. They can be obtained by clicking here.
The comic is also a veteran of HBO’s “Mr. Show With Bob and David,” poised to make a comeback on Netflix, and can be seen as a panelist on “Chelsea Lately.” She plays Cap City Aug. 27-29.
When we say “local boy makes good,” we mean local.
Austin stand-up comic Brian Gaar, who worked as a reporter for many years at the Austin American-Statesman, has snagged an original, new, local late night comedy show on The CW.
The station is touting the show, called “ATX Uncensored-ish,” as “similar to a clip show, a little like a talk show and hopefully a bit funny…ish.” Gaar, along with co-hosts Kath Barbadoro and Joe Barlow, will poke fun at local events and topics that Austinites are talking about on social media.
“If it happens in or around Austin then it’s fair game and no one is safe,” a CW Austin press release reads.
Gaar should be familiar to Austin comedy fans. He can be heard on SiriusXM’s Raw Dog comedy channel and he was named one of the funniest people on Twitter by Playboy and Paste magazines. He has contributed material to “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” Funny or Die, Esquire, CBS News, Playboy, Salon and the Huffington Post. And his hour-long comedy special, “Jokes I Wrote at Work,” can be found on Hulu.
His CW Austin show is scheduled to begin this fall. We’ll let you know when the station announces a date and time.
“I found out I got it while walking my dog in my neighborhood,” says the Moontower Comedy and Fun Fun Fun Fest veteran who recently headlined at Austin’s Velveeta Room. “I just started screaming and had to quickly carry my dog home so I could call my siblings without causing a ruckus in the street.”
Messages of congratulations are filling Maye’s social media streams, and she’s overwhelmed by the support from fellow comics and Austinites.
Comedy acts from Don Rickles to Joe Rogan land on Austin stages this summer.
It seems as if the hotter it gets outside, the more difficult it becomes to laugh. Maybe that explains the relatively sparse list of big comedy names stopping in Austin over the summer (especially in July).
Or perhaps it’s just that comedy bookers — like comedy fans — are notorious procrastinators. For example, we still don’t know if Funny or Die, which has brought acts including Dave Chappelle and Flight of the Conchords to the Austin360 Amphitheater over the past two summers, is mounting a tour this year and whether or not it will stop in Austin (the tour usually begins in August).
Still, there are plenty of national headliners worth checking out, in addition to the locals, who never, ever stop.
Cap City Comedy Club (8120 Research Blvd.) brings in Tommy Davidson, Iliza Shlesinger and Tom Green in June; Michael Ian Black in July; and Mary Lynn Rajskub in August. For times, tickets and other information, call 512-467-2333 or visit www.capcitycomedy.com.
Aussie comic Jim Jefferies, star of the FX television series, “Legit,” brings his raunchy comedy to the Paramount Theatre (713 Congress Ave.) at 8 p.m. on June 4. For tickets, $39.50-$44.50, call 512-474-1221 or browse to www.austintheatre.org.
On June 24 at 7 p.m., the Paramount presents comic legend Don Rickles with TV legend Regis Philbin at Bass Concert Hall (2350 E. Campus Dr.). With an admirable lack of Cosby-like scandals, insult comic and “Mr. Warmth” Rickles remains the comedic elder statesman to see. Tickets range from $55-$130 and can be obtained by calling 512-471-2787 or surfing to texasperformingarts.org.
Puddles Pity Party brings the tears of a clown to the Stateside at the Paramount (713 Congress Ave.) at 7 p.m. on June 27. The imposing clown with the most beautiful and unexpected voice has been a standout at previous Moontower Comedy Festivals. $30 tickets can be purchased by calling 512-474-1221 or visiting www.austintheatre.org.
Perennial Austin visitor and “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me” panelist Paula Poundstone returns to One World Theatre (7701 Bee Cave Rd.) for a pair of shows — 7 and 9:30 p.m. — on Aug. 22. For tickets, $25-$65, and information, call 512-330-9500 or visit www.oneworldtheatre.org.
Stand-up comic, conspiracy theorist and former “Fear Factor” host Joe Rogan performs at ACL-Live (310 Willie Nelson Blvd.) at 8 p.m. on Aug. 29. $38 tickets can be purchased by calling 877-435-9849 or heading to www.acl-live.com online. (Weird Al Yankovic plays the venue on Aug. 20, but his gig is sold out.)
If Summer ends Labor Day weekend, then we are contractually obligated to include the Out of Bounds Comedy Festival, running Sept. 1-7 at various venues in Austin. And why wouldn’t we? The festival — now in its 14th year — brings improv, sketch comedy and stand-up performers from all over to play with the locals. Find more information at www.outofboundscomedy.com.
“Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist” started as a low-budget, low-key animated show on Comedy Central show just a few years before “South Park” would become the animated show the network would become known for. It featured stand-up comics doing some of their material playing against the bone-dry wit of comedian Jonathan Katz, who played a put-upon therapist with a passive-aggressive secretary (Laura Silverman) and a dopey, lovable, layabout son (the brilliant H. Jon Benjamin, who’s become a voiceover star with “Bob’s Burgers” and “Archer”).
Despite rosters of impressive comedic talent and a cleverly home-brewed animated style that became easy to love the more you watched it, the show was never a gigantic hit. At a live performance Thursday night as part of the Moontower Comedy Festival, I heard more people before the show explaining what the show was to others than recollections of bits from the show. “Dr. What?” one older gentleman asked his companion, who was about 25 years younger. The show was explained.
Another guy, sitting behind me at the show, explained to his friends, “I used to watch it, but I was too young to understand it when it was on in the early ’90s. I was 14.”
On stage, the energy was a little different, sometimes flailing, other times absolutely matching perfectly in tone what those of us who remember the show fondly came to see. Jonathan Katz, who moves slowly with a cane due to multiple sclerosis, did a few minutes of stand-up comedy at a microphone before the main set and it began with a rape joke. As horrible as date rape is, Katz suggested, even worse would be “Double-date rape.”
Improbably, the joke earned laughs, as did the rest of Katz’s short set, which mostly consisted of well-crafted wordplay and, memorably, short musical performances of Beatles, Rolling Stones and Eagles songs performed Bar Mitzvah-style. Who knew Dr. Katz (not a real therapist) could sing?
But the meat of the show was mock-therapy sessions featuring comedians Dana Gould, Andy Kindler, Maria Bamford, Dom Irrera and Emo Philps, all of whom had appeared on the original show except Bamford. On the stage, two chairs and a fern were set up, though Irrera complained multiple times that he missed the couch and was hoping for some cuddling.
Gould went topic with material about Bruce Jenner, joking that he’s confused about respecting Jenner’s privacy now as a transgender individual given the distinct complete opposite of privacy we’ve come to expect from the Kardashian clan.
Bamford turned out to fit right in and got some of the biggest laughs with material about her new marriage and a ridiculous song about her couples’ therapist.
Andy Kindler appeared with a non-working wireless microphone and, as Kindler does, turned the awkwardness into its own hilarious bit. “This is the story of my life, Dr. Katz,” he whined, as the microphone was swapped out. Kindler went trademark-meta, asking if he’s using humor as a defense mechanism (“No,” Katz said definitively, to huge laughs) and exclaiming, “even my psychiatrist has better material!”
As on the original show, Irrera got weird and overly affectionate quickly, having left a voice mail for Katz and asking for some snuggle time.
But it was Emo Philips who perhaps captured the original spirit of the show best with his quirky timing. While much of the show had the awkward pauses (completely appropriate for “Dr. Katz) that came with mixing improv with prepared bits, Philips’s felt most like the the animated series, with Katz serving as more of a straight man than a fellow comic breaking the fourth wall.
Apart from the Kindler microphone gaffe, there were other timing issues. It took a while for the show to begin after an introductory Moontower Fest video was shown and sometimes the lengthy pauses and fits-and-starts pacing of the therapy sessions felt less than intentional. But it was a delight to hear Laura Silverman’s familiar, grumpy voice played as an intro to each comic. And the play-off music meant to signal the end of a therapy session turned out to be its own comedic highlight as it always seemed to happen just as a comic was making a point or on the edge of a revelation. It was all about timing and the joy of getting a large dose of Katz’s absurdist, punchline-driven humor, which still kills.
On the matter of an aunt’s death, Katz revealed to Kindler that she was cremated. “We think that’s what did it,” he said.
Well, Austin stand-up comedian Chris Cubas might not have blown up the Internet, but he sure had a dominating presence in my Facebook feed on Thursday (I follow a lot of comics). That was the morning after Cubas guested as the first fan of the Comedy Central game show “@Midnight” to appear on the program as part of its #PointsMe contest.
“Cubas WAS ON @MIDNIGHT! And he KILLED IT”
“KILLED IT ON @MIDNIGHT!!!!!! So good!!!”
“Chris Cubas won the internet last night.”
I had to scroll quite a bit to not see similar posts linking to video of Cubas’ turn on the show, on which he seemed surprisingly comfortable fielding set-ups from host Chris Hardwick and standing between “The Sarah Silverman Program’s” Steve Agee and “The Odd Couple’s” Thomas Lennon.
In the category of #FantasyCelebs, in which contestants had to combine the name of a celebrity with a fantasy-genre touchstone, he hit right out of the gate with “Conan the O’Brien.”
In a round called “Other City Slogans” (in honor of our “Keep Austin Weird” motto) Cubas was quick on the buzzer with gems including “San Antonio: Y’all Heard That New Kid Rock Record?” and “Boston: Ah, Go (expletive) Yourself.”
Check out a portion of his appearance in the video below, then send him kudos on Twitter @ChrisCubas.
Chris D’Elia, Brent Morin, Ron Funches and Rick Glassman bantered and answered moderator and audience questions Tuesday about their beginnings in comedy, careers, joke-writing processes and NBC sitcom “Undateable.”