Comedians don't like our Texas heat. It melts their humor, and that's a puddle nobody wants to step in. Now that our city's cooled off, we're getting those big names back in heavy rotation. This week's talent pool is exceptionally strong, so if you like great comedy (nod), here's six shows worth getting excited about.
Wednesday 10.23 Sandra Bernhard at The Kessler She's a counter-culture icon, a comedian, author of several one-woman shows and a general badass. This gig, which in other cities is titled "Sandyland," is a blend of all of that, a puree of 35 years on stage where vampy music, social commentary and flat-out humor marinate. Tickets begin at $25 for standing, $35 for sitting and go up from there.[jump]
Thursday 10.24 The Observer's Comedy Pub Crawl In addition to the traveling talent, we're keeping it local, free and drunk on Thursday night when Paul Varghese and friends roam the streets of Deep Ellum in search of the perfect set. They'll begin at the Green Room (8 p.m.), each do a set, then unplug the mic, grab the stool, and walk to Anvil Pub, then Twilite Lounge and end at Three Links. It's like a progressive stand-up supper, and you'll get served a different batch of jokes at each bar. Everything but booze is free at this party. You're welcome.
Dylan Moran at the Lakewood Theater This legendary Irish comic sells out every venue across the pond and saw the same with this recent US tour of "Yeah Yeah." He's famous for lots of reasons: Co-writer and star of Black Books, for one. Ditto with those Simon Pegg films. But it's his stand-up that's catapulted him to superstardom. Weirdly there are still seats available for this show, and tickets are a flat $32.
@DadBoner at Sons of Hermann Hall The Twitter handle of pop culture commentator, black-out drunkard and all-around fictitious guy Karl Welzein, @dadboner isn't afraid to get meta in 140 characters or less. And his not being real -- "Welzein" is the creation of comedian Mike Burns -- didn't stop @dadboner from publishing his ruminations in a book called Power Moves: Livin' the American Dream, USA-Style. On Thursday you'll see "@DadBoner and Friends, You Guys," at Sons of Herman Hall, uniting "Welzein" and Matt Braunger with local comic Clint Worth and Granada dude-du-jours, Chris McDonald and Gavin Mulloy -- we're not clear on what those last two are up to. Tickling competition? Perhaps. Reciting the entire script of Spaceballs, verbatim? Anything's possible. Just go. Tickets are an easy $15.
Friday 10.25 Whitney Cummings at House of Blues This woman has paid those dues, starting with Punk'd, then as panelist on Chelsea Lately, working that roast circuit wherein she related Joan River's vagina to an episode of Deadliest Catch and now with her self-titled show Whitney. During that time, she never left her stand-up roots. Instead, she got more brazen. Trimmed the fat from the set. Now her act is a must-see, proving she's more that just a big pretty face perched atop size zero jeans: Homegirl's a force to be reckoned with. Tickets cost $35, plus those fees. There are still seats available.
Kathleen Madigan at The Majestic Madigan's interesting because she's one of the biggest names in comedy, but often isn't considered a 'household name.' She ain't new to this game: She's had her own HBO special, just cut a stand-up show for Netflix and flies overseas to entertain our troops when she's not hustling the comedy club circuit. Even Lewis Black has called her one of the greatest comedians working today, and that guy hates everything. Tickets are $41.50 and are still available.