NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 6/3/14

June 3, 2014

TV Alert: Last week’s Inside Amy Schumer was mind-blowingly great. Don’t miss tonight’s season finale at 10:30 pm and 2:30 am on Comedy Central. And for highlights of the red-hot Season 2 to date, please click here.

Also, John Oliver is on David Letterman; Ricky Gervais is on The Daily Show; Kristen Schaal is on @midnight; and Jane Fonda is on Conan O’Brien.

Hannibal Buress

Hannibal Buress performs at the 8:00 pm Comedy Cellar and at Sweet

Morton Downey Jr.

…and Anthony Atamanuik resurrects the spirit of Morton Downey Jr. at The Tony Show

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:

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm-11:00 pm ($7 for the whole evening): In this 4-hour extravaganza, five of The Magnet’s singing improv groups make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion, followed at 10:15 by a free show that lets audience members join in with a musical improv group to make up stories in song: Magnet Musical Megawatt

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Comics creators join super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at Fontana’s (105 Eldridge Street), with giveaways of comics and gift certificates (and if you can’t make it, watch in online here): Comic Book Club

7:00 pm ($5): A one-woman show from Darcy Burke about Kenny Rogers and Jean Claude Van Damme at The PIT downstairs Lounge: Rocky Mountain Van Damage

7:30 pm-9:15 pm ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups Grammer, Smalls, and Greg at this first half of Harold Night

[TOP PICK]8:00 pm ($7): A monthly wild pun competition hosted by father-daughter duo Fred Firestone and Jo Firestone (dynamic rising star; host of The Incredible Game Show Showcase), with 18 audience members competing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street): Punderdome 3000

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): A monthly show about obsessions with pop culture, tonight focusing on Drag with Murray Hill (MTV’s Showbiz), Miss Vodka Stinger (54 Below), and Hamm Samwich (Showgasm) performing at UCB East hosted by Damian Bellino & Anne Rodeman: So Into It: A Fanatic Variety Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Hannibal Buress (co-star of Comedy Central’s Broad City and Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show; former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, one-hour Comedy Central specials Animal Furnace and Live From Chicago, host of Comedy Night), Nick DiPaolo (star stand-up, with numerous appearances on David Letterman, Jay Leno, Louie; Emmy-nominated comedy writer, talk show host), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), Robert Kelly (Louie, Comedy Central, Opie & Anthony), Jeff Lamp (Jay Leno, Comedy Central), and Archie McCloud (Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show): Hannibal Buress, Nick DiPaolo, Gregg Rogell, and More

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($7.25 online using discount code NORTHERN; no min.): Ari Shaffir (Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Down and Dirty, Comedy Central, National Lampoon, hour-long set Passive Aggressive), Christian Finnegan (Conan O’Brien, co-star of TBS’ Are We There Yet?; three Comedy Central specials; MSNBC, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Chappelle’s Show, The Today Show), Leah Bonnema (VH1, WeTV’s Cinematherapy, Logo, Opie & Anthony’s Virus Channel), Josh Homer, and Josh Carter performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Ray Devito & Josh Carter: Northern Discomfort: Ari Shaffir, Christian Finnegan, and More

8:00 pm ($12): Sketch comedy from an upbeat group at The PIT upstairs theatre: Totally, Yes

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Subhah Agarwal, Matt Higgins, Charles McBee, Meghan O’Keefe, Geno Bisconte, and Sam Grittner performing stand-up or sketch for this free weekly show at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Tim Ellis & Mo Fathelbab: Manifesto

[FREE] 8:00 pm: A Harold performed in the dark—”We take an audience suggestion, turn off the lights, and create a unique theatrical experience not possible with your eyes open, mixing old time radio with modern long form improv”—at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Bat: Improv in the Dark

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm (reserve your free spots by clicking here): Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, upcoming Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Jacqueline Novak (Comedy Central, College Humor), Matt Ruby (MTV; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, blog Sandpaper Suit), and more performing stand-up at The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) produced every Tuesday by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, Gary Vider, and Sachi Ezura: Hot Soup

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): Hannibal Buress (co-star of Comedy Central’s Broad City and Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show; former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, one-hour Comedy Central specials Animal Furnace and Live From Chicago, host of Comedy Night), Sasheer Zamata (instant star cast member of Saturday Night Live), Greg Johnson (Sirius Radio, co-host of Myrtle Comedy), and more performing stand-up or sketch at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon long-time staff comic, Comedy Central, VH1, co-host of Nat Geo’s Duck Quakes Don’t Echo): Sweet

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s The Alligator Lounge (600 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by Sean Donnelly, Kevin McCaffrey, Robert Dean, and/or Steve O’Brien: Comedy at Alligator Lounge

9:15 pm-Midnight ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups Apollo, Women & Men, and Higgins at this second half (continued from 7:30 pm) of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Brilliantly innovative comic Anthony Atamanuik (Death by Roo Roo, 30 Rock, Conan O’Brien, The Nights of Our Lives) plays oddball characters in a mix of sketch and improv, tonight performing as Norton Bounty Jr.: “Long before the Tea Party, Glenn Beck, and Sean Hannity, Morton Downey Jr. was a reactionary self-described loudmouth who courted the opinions of the masses and chainsmoked cigarettes. He turned political dialogue into spectacle. In his wake, a new voice has arisen: Norton Bounty Jr. He disagrees with everything and everyone, including himself. Come experience his incendiary style of provocative talk show” (with help from producer Andy Rocco and Jesse VandenBergh); plus stand-up from Matt Koff (writer for The Daily Show), Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic), and Stephanie Simbari, all performing at the UCB East theatre: The Tony Show

9:30 pm ($12): Sketch comedy from duo James Coker & Marshall Stratton, plus guest comedy groups Girls With Brown Hair and Pop Roulette, performing at The PIT downstairs lounge: Coker & Stratton

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5; no min.): This super-affordable weekly stand-up club show tonight features Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, upcoming Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Ari Shaffir (Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Down and Dirty, Comedy Central, National Lampoon, hour-long set Passive Aggressive), Christian Finnegan (Conan O’Brien, co-star of TBS’ Are We There Yet?; three Comedy Central specials; MSNBC, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Chappelle’s Show, The Today Show), Brooks Wheelan (cast member of Saturday Night Live), and Danny Palmer performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): $5 Funnies: Sean Patton, Ari Shaffir, Christian Finnegan, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Paul Mecurio (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents, HBO), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam), Mike Vecchione (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern), Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central), and Dan Naturman (David Letterman, Jay Leno) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show): Paul Mecurio, Greer Barnes, Ryan Hamilton, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), Luis J. Gomez, Dave Smith, and other NYC stand-ups performing live on stage for this podcast show at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Legion of Skanks

Tuesday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[TOP PICK] [ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): In this delightful weekly open-mic show, each comic has 3 minutes to try out a character-based bit (e.g., for a solo show, sketch, or audition) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Jen Kwok (Comedy Central) and Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger): Imposter Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Open-mic sketch that allows you to either perform a sketch with your own performers or bring in pages for the audience to perform at The PIT Green Room, followed by feedback on your bit from PIT “sketch-perts:” Pens & Pencils

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 2 1/2 hours. Arrive 30 minutes before the show to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[FREE] 6:15 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types providing 2 minutes for each performer (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge hosted by Jay Dean and Tynan DeLong: Two Nice Guys Open MIc

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Weekly stand-up open mic (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Dustin Drury: This Is Happening Open MIc

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email PhoningItInMic@gmail.com with subject line Phoning Tuesday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Ian Fidance: Comics Phoning It In

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: This weekly two-hour open mic storytelling show allows each performer 8 minutes to tell a compelling and funny tale at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge hosted by Jake Hart and guest co-host Susan Kent: The Dump

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:15: Sign up at 9:30 pm for the opportunity to make up a musical on the spot with The Magnet improv group Mint Condition: Magnet Musical Improv Mixer

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin, John Trowbridge, and/or Katie East: Tuesday Night Open Mic

11:00 pm ($3): A breathtaking 40 comics are given 2 minutes each in this rapid-fire open-mic stand-up show at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted with wit and energy by Jay Welch: Bring It

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): An improv jam for students at all levels to work on their skills at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Elke Reid and David Frasure: Study Hall

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

 From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.