On Nov. 7, the Stage Door Theater hosted the second Comedians Doing Comedy show. The show featured host Nick Johnson and locals Griffin Fleming, Kailey VanOcker and Daniel Wagner. The headliner for the show was Brett Badostain from Boise.
The theater was standing room only as Nick Johnson stepped onto the stage to begin the show. Johnson appeared ever the polished comedian. His set was brief, yet funny.
Griffin Fleming, the amateur performer of the night, nervously took the stage after Johnson. He came across as a bit spastic and awkward, especially when it came to his “swag” induced seizure.
His use of “hashtag: whatever he was talking about at the time” combined with the continual mentions of Twitter got stale rather fast. The jokes about his virginity were funny, but not enough to carry the whole show. Some audience members were offended by Fleming’s set, even going as far as to call him rude and unentertaining.
However, Fleming was excited to be branded as rude and offensive. “That actually makes me kind of happy,” he said. “I know people don’t get my humor. My normal humor is offensive. The fact that they found me rude is really awesome.” With a little more practice, Fleming could become a strong stand-up comedian.
Crowd-favorite Kailey VanOcker opened her set with a hilarious parody of Taylor Swift’s “I Knew You Were Trouble.” Her version of the chorus, “I wore my beer goggles when you walked in,” made me laugh so hard I could barely breathe.
During an earlier show in September, VanOcker discussed wanting to have a job as a phone sex operator, but it fell through. She was however able to score the prestigious position as a “Sammich Artist,” at a local restaurant. She wondered aloud why a female who loves making “sammiches” is still single.
At the end of her set, VanOcker told some jokes directed at people in the LGBTQ community, and some audience members looked upset.
The Nerdy Virgin, Daniel Wagner, once again opened up with, “So, I’m a virgin.” The first time it was funny, the second time was not as funny.
Wagner appeared much more comfortable on stage. He didn’t look as nervous as his performance at the September show, and it made for a much better set. A joke about being a virgin ninja, or as he calls himself, a “viginja,” had the audience roaring with laughter at this newly created nickname.
With his comedy, Wagner walks a thin line between lovable virgin-nerd and pretentious goody-two shoes. The being a virgin concept is funny, but eventually it will get old. It was nice to see how much he had matured as a comedian in two months.
The headliner was Brett Badostain, a touring comedian from Boise. He poked fun at Wagner and Fleming for their lack of experience in the ways of romance. He was not afraid to make fun of himself either, which I find awesome in a stand-up comic. He was amusing, but the jokes many audience members found most funny cannot be repeated here.
The next Comedians Doing Comedy show is Dec. 5. Headliner Emma Arnold travels west from Idaho to bring her comedic skills to La Grande’s Stage Door Theatre.