NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 6/11/12

June 11, 2012

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For excerpts from Dave Hill’s new bestselling book, please click here.

Death Wears Stilettos

One of NYC’s funniest shows is a noir comedy where the wonderful cast has a great time even backstage: Death Wears Stilettos…

Jena Friedman and Wyatt Cenac

…and Jena Friedman (writer for David Letterman), Wyatt Cenac (correspondent for The Daily Show), and more will delight you at Jena’s free monthly show Entertaining the Bartender

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show running about 90 minutes at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with host Chris Gaynor: Open Mic Mondays

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Open-mic storytelling, with each of the four audience members chosen from the bucket of names getting to tell tales for 7 minutes each at The PIT downstairs lounge along with host Jake Hart: The Dump

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): A monthly storytelling show from the wonderful Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 18-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of hilarious monthly storytelling extravaganzas Tales of the Cosmos and Whatever Happened to the Nerds?; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here), along with guest storyteller Tommy Pryor, at Under St. Marks: The Adam Wade from New Hampshire Show: Tales of Life, Love, and Little League

7:00 pm ($5): Sketch troupe Shelby Company performs oddball bits for this Magnet sketch show show that in the past has included two-timing monsters and presidential ninjas: Ephemerama

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Four improvisers form teams with comics they’ve never performed with before at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Kaleidoscope

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, one of the very best sketch shows of 2012. It’s a noir mini-play written & directed with immense wit by Michael Trapp (Stone Cold Fox), who with this script demonstrates he’s a rising star with a surefire career in the biz. And beyond the pages, Michael’s put together an all-star cast, including John Murray (simultaneously gripping and hilarious as a hardboiled detective with an absurdly short attention span), Brandon Scott Jones (who delivers an unforgettable scene with John that’s worth the trip all by itself), and D’Arcy Carden (who abandons her usual laid-back persona here to be smoking hot). These are all total pros who are virtually assured careers in TV and film. Catch them while they’re honing their craft and waiting to be noticed in one of the most consistently fun shows in NYC: Death Wears Stilettos

…and in the other half of this double-bill, a show for which I had high hopes since some of my fondest childhood memories are of Krypto and his Space Canine Patrol Agents (S.C.P.A.). But this ain’t that. Instead, it’s a deliberately dumb version of Saturday morning cartoon shows that demonstrates little respect, affection, or wit towards its source material. The most notable elements are Neil Casey, who is hilarious as an evil alien insect-man; Rob Lathan as Neil’s lackey; and Sue Galloway as the gal even dog creatures want to make out with. This could have been so much more, especially with the brilliant Craig Rowin as co-writer; but instead it’s Dog Fleet

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($9.47 online or $8 at the door): Tom Papa (host of Jerry Seinfeld-produced NBC comedy The Marriage Ref; numerous appearances on David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno; three Comedy Central specials), Barbara Holm (SF Sketchfest, Bumbershoot), and muscial guest John Wesley Harding performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) with sketches and more from a duo who between them won four 2011 ECNY Awards—including Best Variety Show and Best Hosts—Kristen Schaal and Kurt Braunohler: Hot Tub Variety

8:00 pm ($5): Making great use of UCB East’s previous incarnation as an indie movie theatre, tonight features screenings of select films running five minutes or less—most of them funny—crafted in the style of TV pilots. The shorts receiving the most audience votes get to continue with additional episodes, while the others are “canceled” at Channel 101

8:00 pm ($8): A sketch comedy show that “captures all the emotions associated with the daily grind—pain, boredom, fun, exhaustion, and did we mention pain?” Among the show’s performers is the lovely Katey Healy-Wurzburg (The Fascinator) at The PIT upstairs theatre: Pink Slip This, B*tch

[FREE] 8:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Jamie Lee (Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Ridiculousness, VH1), Michelle Wolf, Ashley Brooke Roberts, Sam Morril, Chris Lamberth, and Gabe Pacheco performing at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s Matchless (557 Manhattan Avenue) hosted by Mike Denny, Michael Che, and/or Nimesh Patel: Broken Comedy

8:30 pm ($7): Sketch troupe Shelby Company performs oddball bits for this Magnet sketch show show that in the past has included two-timing monsters and presidential ninjas: Ephemerama

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, star of The King of Miami, The Dave Hill Explosion, band Diamondsnake, champion rapper; new bestselling book Tasteful Nudes), Seth Cockfield (visiting from Austin), Dava Krause and Jake Weisman (both visiting from LA), and musical guest Adam Day performing at Brooklyn’s Freddy’s Bar (627 Fifth Avenue; take R subway to Prospect Avenue) for this free biweekly show hosted by Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant stand-up, writer, and storyteller; TLC, trutV; for stand-up videos about overindulging at 30 and impersonating Morrisey, please click here and here) and Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Stripped Stories): Dive Comedy

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: This monthly stand-up show from wonderful dark humor comic Jena Friedman (staff writer for David Letterman) tonight features Wyatt Cenac (star correspondent for The Daily Show), Leo Allen (former writer for Saturday Night Live; Comedy Central Presents, Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Funny or Die, director/co-writer of Comedy Central’s Jon Benjamin Has a Van, host of top NYC comedy show Whiplash), Calise Hawkins (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, writer for Playboy.com), and Jessica Delfino (co-creator of New York Funny Songs Festival), plus maybe “a surprise guest,” all performing at the Ace Hotel lobby (20 West 29th Street, between Fifth Avenue & Broadway): Entertaining the Bartender

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch troupes try out new bits: Fambly (which includes wonderful rising star Mamrie Hart, Nicole Byer, Dan Chamberlain, Veronica Osorio, and a sharp crew of writers), and Neighbor Boy (which tends to be weak on material, but includes such talents as Tim Dunn and Beth Appel, and may get a shot in the arm with the addition of writer Caitlin Bitzegaio): Maude Night: Neighbor Boy & Fambly

9:30 pm ($8): Young improvisors at The PIT upstairs theatre make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion: The Shady Bunch

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Following a club format, hosts Nore Davis & Andrew Short perform stand-up throughout for a total of 25 minutes, two comics each perform a 15-minute set, and then a seasoned headliner closes out the show with a 20-minute set, all at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: On the Road

9:30 pm ($5): A monthly stand-up competition at UCB East in which “new and emerging stand-up comics face off against each other in front of a panel of judges eager to provide unsolicited advice and even more unsolicited scores”—the judges being Brian Cichocki (Caroline’s, Stand-Up New York), and Shannon Coffey. If you’re an up-and-coming stand-up, send a video link and brief bio to john@ucbcomedy.com for a chance to participate in Stand-Up Smackdown

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Twelve improv comics who are “friends of Dorothy” perform at The Magnet hosted by Andrew Fafoutakis: There’s No Place Like Home: A GLBTQ Event

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Keith Huang: Base Jam

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who are no longer being announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea hosted by the wonderful Leo Allen (HBO, Saturday Night Live, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central): Whiplash

11:00 pm ($5): A sketch comedy radio show/podcast live on the UCB East stage, with tonight’s guests musical group Summer & Eve, George Kareman, Laura Willcox, and Ryan Williams, plus regulars Adam Bozarth, Dan Chamberlain, Matt Little, Taylor Moore, and Anna Rubanova: Left Handed Radio

[FREE] 11:00 pm: If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! night (see listing above). If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this exceptionally supportive stand-up open-mic at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jared Reed: Fresh

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.