ADAM SANDLER: 100% FRESH

Poffy The Cucumber

Fresh – if you’re 12. Adam Sandler used to be a funny standup comedian. I used to love that unsure persona, and the sudden left turns in his gags. This was way back before most of you Adam Sandler fans were Adam Sandler fans (circa 1990). Then came SNL (1990-1995), and numerous movies, some good, most bad; a handful of … Read More

STEVE MARTIN AND MARTIN SHORT: AN EVENING YOU WILL FORGET FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE

Poffy The Cucumber

Old Hands at Comedy, or just Old Comedy? The aptly-named STEVE MARTIN AND MARTIN SHORT: AN EVENING YOU WILL FORGET FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE is a cavalcade of roasting comedy, political puppetry, jazz anecdotes and bluegrass banjo that you truly will not remember. Comedy legend Steve Martin and comedy somewhat-well-known Martin Short team up for a two-man show, … Read More

KEVIN JAMES: NEVER DON’T GIVE UP

Poffy The Cucumber

Never Don’t Just Watch. Let’s see: if a comedian still hasn’t said anything remotely funny or intriguing or insightful 32 minutes into their set, you can pretty much guarantee the rest of their 1 hour set is going to be just as shallow, unfunny and lame, right? Such is the case with the simpleton humor in KEVIN JAMES: NEVER DON’T … Read More

CHRIS ROCK: TAMBORINE

Poffy The Cucumber

Bang the Tamborine Slowly… Chris Rock is back! In TAMBORINE, Rock’s 6th standup Special, his pace is a little less panther, his delivery a little less clipped, his demeanor a little less arrogant. The interim since his last Special (KILL THE MESSENGER, 2008) has robbed him of some electric youth and vitality, not least through the hard life lessons learned … Read More

ANTHONY JESELNIK: THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS

Poffy The Cucumber

Offending at the speed of Jeselnik. With his Quaalude strut, runway model looks, and deadpan delivery as deliberate as a surgeon’s scalpel, the Alice Cooper of comedy eviscerates a San Francisco audience. When Anthony Jeselnik kills, he really kills. This standup comedian, comedy writer (LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON), producer (THE JESELNIK OFFENSIVE), regular roaster on Comedy Central, and plonker … Read More

EDDIE MURPHY: RAW

Poffy The Cucumber

Bigger, brainier, braver than DELIRIOUS–and ten minutes too long. “HALF!” I learned all I need to know about California divorce courts from Eddie Murphy. In his second standup special, RAW, Murphy has matured slightly, taking on meatier issues than the fluff he posited in his 1983 standup film DELIRIOUS. “Half!” is one of his most enduring bits, as he outlines … Read More

EDDIE MURPHY: DELIRIOUS

Poffy The Cucumber

Cosby with Swearing: Profanity Inanity. DELIRIOUS is anything but. Unless it’s saying you have to be delirious to think it’s comedy of the highest order. Eddie Murphy’s first standup special is very funny, yes, and it provided a wealth of quotes for me and my cucumber buddies when it first hit the screen in 1983. But in retrospect, it’s just … Read More

CHRIS ROCK: BRING THE PAIN

Poffy The Cucumber

The Shotgun Monologues. Chris Rock taught me what “tossing the salad” meant. Admit it: you too. During his HBO comedy standup special BRING THE PAIN, Rock recounts a prisoner’s graphic advice on what you need to do to get along in jail. And a superstar is born… By 1996, Chris Rock had grown into a formidable comedian in the United … Read More

COLIN QUINN: UNCONSTITUTIONAL

Poffy The Cucumber

Deconstructionist Instructionist. Standup comedian Colin Quinn flexes his brain bone – and incites Americans to flex theirs – in this refreshingly intelligent take on the U.S. constitution. Now all we need is for Congress to grow a brain and listen to him. UNCONSTITUTIONAL finds the Noo Yawk raconteur in his finest form. Ever. Always been a fan of Colin Quinn’s … Read More

CHRIS TUCKER LIVE

Poffy The Cucumber

Falling Down While Standing Up. From his hometown of Atlanta Georgia, filmed at the 4,600-capacity Fox Theater in November 2014, Chris Tucker regales us with the type of comedy that would be heckled unforgivingly in smaller clubs. It’s CHRIS TUCKER LIVE. I think. Knowing that comics like Carlin and Hicks and Pryor existed, and knowing current voices like observational powerhouse … Read More

DENNIS MILLER: AMERICA 180°

Poffy The Cucumber

The Comedian Formerly Known As Dennis Miller. Dennis Miller is smart. I used to record THE DENNIS MILLER SHOW on VHS (that’s an olden-days DVR, chillun) and marvel at the way his mind spiraled headlong into esoteric references to rail against ignorance. In his 2014 standup special, AMERICA 180 DEGRESS (a one hour routine, filmed in Irvine), Miller is now … Read More

CHRIS ROCK: BIGGER AND BLACKER

Poffy The Cucumber

The Biggest and Blackest! The shot across the bow was BRING THE PAIN (HBO, 1996). A rising comedian then, now Chris Rock has honed his standup act to a knife-keen incisiveness in his third HBO Special, BIGGER AND BLACKER. On the famed Apollo stage in Harlem, New York, attired in shiny black leather, Rock paces like a jungle cat, spitting … Read More

BILL COSBY: FAR FROM FINISHED

Poffy The Cucumber

Far From Funny. What most vexes me about Bill Cosby is not his refusal to use profanity – but his holier-than-thou attitude towards people who do. And that’s everyone else. It has become such an obsession with him that he opens his latest comedy special, FAR FROM FINISHED, whining about the fact that he doesn’t swear and other comedians do. … Read More

CHRIS ROCK: NEVER SCARED

Poffy The Cucumber

Fearless and Peerless. A touch of Cosby, a sprinkle of Pryor – and a slam of Rock. CHRIS ROCK: NEVER SCARED is the comedian’s fourth HBO Special, recorded in March 2004 at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C. And I almost feel guilty making the inevitable comparisons to his predecessors. Because he’s better than both of them. Yeah, I said … Read More