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SF Sketchfest Returns! January 24th - February 10th.

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, January 15, 2013 11:55am | Post a Comment


San Francisco’s comedy festival SF Sketchfest runs January 24th - February 10th and features over 150 shows with some of the top comedians and best up-and-coming talent around.

SF SketchfestSF Sketchfest, the most prestigious comedy festival on the West Coast, celebrates their 12th year with a tribute to Portlandia with Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein, evenings with Bruce Campbell and Patton Oswalt, Drew Carey, Futurama Live, and so much more!

See the amazing line-up and get your tickets HERE!

Here are a couple of nights we here at Amoeba recommend!

Judge John Hodgman LIVE with John Hodgman & Jesse Thorn, musical guest John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats
Friday, January 25, 10:30pm at Marines’ Memorial Theatre
Join bestselling author and self-appointed judge John Hodgman as he listens to real- life disputes and weighs in on such pressing issues as “Is chili a soup or a stew?” This live version of the popular Maximum Fun-produced podcast features Bullseye host and Maximum Fun founder Jesse Thorn and musical guest John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats.

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out this week, 8/2 & 8/9: Tig Notaro...the next great female comic...

Posted by Brad Schelden, August 18, 2011 12:15pm | Post a Comment
I have been a huge fan of strong female comedians since I can remember. My first memory is probably of Joan Rivers on the Muppet Show or in The Muppets Take Manhattan. If you have not yet seen her recent documentary A Piece of Work, you must do so right now. Amazing stuff.

I can't remember a time when I didn't love Bea Arthur. I was too young to watch Maude, but I was instantly in love with The Golden Girls. I think I honestly just wanted them all to be my grandmothers. How awesome would it be to go to Miami for the weekend to stay with Blanche, Dorothy, Rose, and Sophia. I am sure this was not every kids dream. But it was mine. I didn't have some Harold and Maude type fantasy. I was gay after all. But I just wanted to hang out. Talk about current events. Make fun of celebrities or people in general. I loved that sarcastic and humorous outlook on life. And The Golden Girls might have been the first show that I remember to feature gay characters. There were other shows of course. But not many. Dorothy's old friend visits and turns out to be lesbian and falls in love with Rose. Blanche's brother visits and comes out to her in his golden years. And of course the very first episode features a gay housekeeper. My favorite character was of course Dorothy, played by the amazing Bea Arthur. If there is one celebrity I could go back in time to hang out with or have dinner with, It would probably be Bea Arthur. She was hilarious and sarcastic. But also brutally honest and warm and sincere. She loved her friends and her family more than anything. But she understood a good joke and could never be mad at anyone for too long. She was sort of my role model. And she also got me in love with the female comic. Gay guys have always flocked to the female comic. There just are not that many out gay male comedians. At least there weren't in the '80s and '90s. So these comics were all we had to relate too. And honestly, they were a whole lot better than any of the gay male comics that I had seen or heard about. Female comics were sort of outsiders just like the gays.  Bea Arthur probably opened the doors for a lot of these women. At least the TV comic. There would probably be no Roseanne without Bea Arthur. I seriously can't imagine my life with either one of them.

What Bea Arthur did for the TV female comic, Joan Rivers did for the stand up comic. Joan Rivers was also brutally honest. Like Sophia on The Golden Girls, she never held back. She said what was on her mind. I don't think there could be a Kathy Griffin, Janeane Garofalo, Wanda Sykes, Sandra Bernhard, Margaret Cho, or Sarah Silverman without Joan RIvers.

There are obviously different styles of female stand up comedians. Most of the good ones end up with their own sitcom or talk show, which is sort of the goal -- a stable job that doesn't involve the crazy kind of travel needed to be a stand up comic. Sarah Silverman ended up creating one of the most brilliant shows ever. The Sarah Silverman Show, unfortunately, didn't last long enough. But she and Brian Posehn together is magic. Ellen DeGeneres and Rosie O'Donnell ended up with two of the most successful daytime talk shows. Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar ended up hosting The View. Joy Behar also has a nighttime news show. While I am not a huge fan of The View, I am a huge fan of the comedy of both Whoopi and Joy. Whoopi Goldberg has been in some of my favorite movies...at least some of my favorites of the '80s. She gave us Jumpin' Jack Flash in 1986, and Burglar and Fatal Beauty in 1987. Ghost in 1990. Sister Act in 1992.

Ellen DeGeneres was the star of a very successful sitcom and now that Oprah has left us, Ellen probably has the most successful daytime talk show. I was never really a fan of Kathy Griffin until her reality show started. I just didn't really know much about her, and I was not about to watch some sitcom starring Brooke Shields. But how can you not love somebody who is such a supporter of the gays? And so hilarious. I was hooked after the first time I saw her perform. Going back much further, I do have faint memories of Phyllis Diller -- probably from Scooby Doo or The Mad Monster Party -- but I did always love her. She got her start at the Purple Onion in San Francisco, so how can I not love that? I was also obsessed with Lily Tomlin. Two of my other favorite movies as a kid were 9 to 5 and The Incredible Shrinking Woman. Lily Tomlin was another stand up comedian that I just somehow related to.

I have also always loved the female comedians of Saturday Night Live. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are two of the best comedians that show has ever seen. They now star in two of the best sitcoms on television, 30 Rock and Parks & Recreation. Kristen Wiig is one of the funniest people to ever exist and one of the main reasons to still watch SNL. She is already a movie star; please watch Bridesmaids if you have not seen it! I also see a TV show in Kristen Wiig's future, but maybe not for another ten years. SNL has also give us the brilliant Maya Rudolph, Rachel Dratch, Molly Shannon, Ana Gasteyer, Jane Curtain, Laraine Newman, Gilda Radner, Jan Hooks, Cheri Oteri, Nora Dunn, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Janeane Garofalo and Sarah Silverman may have not had the most successful careers on SNL, but they were both cast members that just happened to go to do amazing things afterwards. Some actresses went on to better things and some did not, but they have all done amazing comedic work at some point in their life.

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(In which we consider Michael Ian Black.)

Posted by Job O Brother, February 2, 2009 06:17pm | Post a Comment

Michael Ian Black

Lately I’ve been listening to and watching a lot of Michael Ian Black. So when the Amoegods* let it be known that we Amoebloggers might consider posting some musings celebrating Black History Month, I thought, “How fortuitous!” For nothing says Black History Month more than uproarious comic Michael Ian Black.

Like most people who are exactly like me, my introduction to Mr. Black came in the form of beloved sketch comedy show The State. Because Mtv is run by terrorists who hate America, however, you younger generations haven’t been able to enjoy The State on DVD, but must settle for choppy YouTube clips like the one below, in which the aforementioned Mr. Black plays the concerned home-owner.


Most fans of The State carry with them a sense of desperation and compulsion to seek out any projects to which a former The State cast member signs his or her name to (i.e., Reno 911, The Ten, the Oklahoma City bombing, etc.). This blog entry isn’t for them, because I’m going to showcase things they already know. If you qualify as a fan of The State, why not click on this link and enjoy reading this instead

Now that we’ve gotten rid of those losers, let’s you and I learn a little more about Michael Ian Black and his contributions to comedy. Take notes and pay close attention, because I’m not going to repeat myself and you’re never to read this post again.


The Congress of Vienna. The Marquis of Labrador is seated at the round table,
third from the right of the diplomats who are seated.


Drawing of breadfruit by Sydney Parkinson

According to my research, Michael Ian Black was born. Some time later he joined things and went on to succeed with stuff. In addition to his role as McKinley in the film Wet Hot American Summer, he hosted VH1’s television program, I Love the 70’s (and subsequent spin-offs), though he has later reported that he was forced into doing this at gunpoint by his abusive husband, Chuck Traynor.

Mr. Black would later join forces with fellow The State cast members Michael Showalter (pronounced Showalter) and David Wain to form the comedy troupe STELLA, named after 1932 Olympic Gold Medal winning athlete, Stella Walsh, who’s name was actually Stanisława Walasiewicz, who, though a hermaphrodite, was to one day ignore the rest of this paragraph and move on to the next one.

Stay with me here. As I said before, I’m not going to repeat myself. And I don’t wanna hurt you. Don’t make me hurt you.


Some time after 2004 (but before 2006) Comedy Central broadcasted a half-hour sitcom version of STELLA, which, sadly, lasted only one season before it contracted cholera and died – just one of many eerie coincidences linking STELLA with eleventh President of the United States, James K. Polk. (Indeed, some conspiracy theorists conclude that STELLA is still rightfully the Commander-in-Chief of, if not the entire U.S., at least Nebraska.)


Something else you may want to exchange money for at your local Amoeba Music is Mr. Black’s compact disc, I Am A Wonderful Man, on which you may delight in recordings of his stand-up comedy routine in the English language.

But of course the most interesting fact about Mr. Black is not his celebrity, not his collection of hobbies, nor his marriage to Sarah Childress or his part in the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo; rather, it is his uncanny resemblance to my boyfriend, Corey. But that plays no part in my liking Michael Ian Black – though it does explain why I did once mistakenly fellate him at the Golden Globes a few years back.


My boyfriend, Corey Scholibo

Once you learn about the contributions Mr. Black has made, it becomes clear that his name should and must be included when considering the tremendously positive role of Black America. Thank you for your time, and God bless.

*That’s a term I just coined to describe the ruling class of Amoeba Music. I plan on copyrighting it, so don’t use it without sending me money. I think a nickel per usage is fair until further notice.