NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 6/14/14

June 14, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Marvel Comics

Comic Con hosts a weekend convention at the Javits Center, which today includes Comic Book Club at 4:15: Special Edition NYC

Masterpiece Comics

…and a delightful graphic novel series blending classic literature with comic books…

Masterpiece Comics

…is brought to life in a multimedia show at Brooklyn’s Brick Theatre: Masterpiece Comics

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $12 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] 10:00 am – 7:00 pm ($30): A comic book convention from the producers of New York Comic Con running today and tomorrow at the Jacob Javits Center. Today’s panels include “Secret Identities: Transgender Themes in Comic Books” at 12:30 pm, “Reimagining the Female Hero” at 4:00 pm, and comedic fan show Comic Book Club at 4:15 pm: Special Edition NYC

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 7:15 pm, 8:45 pm, 9:15 pm, 10:30 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Neal Brennan, Dave Attell, Greer Barnes, and Kevin Brennan at the 10:30 show, and Dave Attell, Greer Barnes, Russ Meneve, and Kevin Brennan at the 12:15 show, with four of the shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane), and the 7:15 and 9:15 shows at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Saturday

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($12): Improvisors in their underwear—Julie Sharbutt, Shaina Stigler, Tim Racine, Langston Belton, and Michael Greene—making up scenes based on tales spun by a fully clothed guest monologist (TBA) at The PIT upstairs theatre: Instamacy

7:30 pm ($10): Improv powerhouses Charlie Todd, Jim Santangeli, Natasha Rothwell, and more at UCB Chelsea interview an audience member about where he or she grew up and then “turn that town’s tourist attractions, landmarks, hangouts, local celebrities, urban legends, and more into a hilarious show made up on the spot:” The Curfew: Not From Around Here

7:30 pm ($10): Sharp Magnet improvisors “perform organic freeform improvisation in two mind-blowing parts; the only rule is that there are no rules:” The Weave

[$] 7:30 pm & 10:00 pm ($53 & 2-drink min.) A TV and movie comic who first earned fame on Chappelle’s Show, and has gone on to star in the hour-long Comedy Central special I WIll Not Apologize and appear in TBS’ Are We There Yet?, headlining tonight and Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Charlie Murphy

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm & 10:00 pm ($20; no min.): Great lineup of Michael Che (instant star correspondent for The Daily Show; former staff writer for Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Comedy Central, VH1), 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), Dan St. Germain (enormously likeable and rapidly rising star who has several TV shows in the works; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half-Hour Special, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), Michelle Buteau (FOX’s Enlisted, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, Craig Ferguson, VH1’s Best Week Ever, @midnight), Joe Matarese (David Letterman, Chelsea Lately, Comedy Central Presents, Bravo, IFC), and Pete Davidson (MTV’s Guy Code) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Michael Che, Sean Patton, Dan St. Germain, Michelle Buteau, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8): Improv groups Big Black Car (which includes Chris Grace, Nate Starkey, and Ashley Ward) and The Baldwins (which includes Micah Sherman Brigid Boyle, and Sarah Nowak) make stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre: BBC and The Baldwins

8:00 pm ($10): A freestyle rapping long-form improv troupe takes the stage for nearly an hour at The PIT downstairs lounge: North Coast

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm & 10:00 pm (8:00 pm show is $26 & 2-drink min.; but for 10:00 pm show, tickets are FREE if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 367-9000 and mention code SHARK, though there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): A veteran stand-up who’s performed on HBO, Comedy Central, and Logo, and won two Emmys as a writer/producer for The Rosie O’Donnell Show headlining one last night at the Gotham Comedy Club: Judy Gold

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced), plus improv troupe Butts, performing at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Peggy O’Leary: Hard, Lonely, and Vicious

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$]  [DISCOUNTED] 8:15 pm ($15 online using discount code MPCOMICS): An hour-long multimedia show adapting Robert Sikoryak’s superb Masterpiece Comics graphic novels for the stage, re-telling classic literature in the style of popular American comic books. Tonight’s voice actors include Julie Klausner. Don’t miss what’s likely to be a mind-blowing show at Brooklyn’s The Brick Theatre (575 Metropolitan Avenue; take the L subway to Lorimer or G to Metropolitan): Masterpiece Comics

[FREE] 8:30 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) hosted by Gary Vider (hilarious writer & deadpan stand-up; for sample jokes, please click here): Comedy at Irish Exit

[TOP PICK]9:00 pm ($10): One of the gutsiest and most hilarious troupes in comedy history—with honors including being Cage Match Champion for three years in a row, and winning the 2011 ECNY Award for Best Improv Group—UCB Chelsea’s genius improvisors Death by Roo Roo

9:00 pm ($10): Magnet improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Using real horror films purchased in local gas stations and bodegas, the hosts select specific clips to play for 30 seconds, pause, and then ask the improvisers to finish the scene. Will anyone survive at The PIT downstairs lounge? Attend at your own peril with hosts J. W. Crump and Jordan Hirsch: Gas Station Horror

[$] 9:30 pm ($20): Clanging refers to speaking with a focus on sound rather than meaning, such as compulsive rhyming or alliteration. Josh Radnor (How I Met Your Mother, Liberal Arts) and Dion Flynn (Jimmy Fallon) have been clanging together almost daily for more than 15 years, and tonight do so at The PIT upstairs theatre: Clanging with Josh & Dion

[TOP PICK]10:00 pm ($10): UCBT Artistic Director Nate Dern, Zhubin Parang (writer for The Daily Show), Tracey Wigfield (writer for 30 Rock), Michael Kayne (Baby Wants Candy, Diamond Lion), Aaron Jackson (Newsadoozies), Langan Kingsley (rising star; sketch group Beige, one-woman show The Dicewoman Cometh), and more form an improv group at UCB East that won this year’s prestigious Cage Match championship by springboarding scenes off interviewing an audience member about his or her love life: What I Did For Love

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: “Starting in 1982, the city of Atlanta threw an annual party called Freaknik which essentially became the largest black spring break party in the country. The party became so big and wild that the city shut it down for good in 1996. But comedians Andy Sandford, Noah Gardenswartz, and Steve Forrest are bringing Freaknik back…to Long Island City. ‘Comedy Freaknik’ will be a lot like the original Freaknik, except it’s going to happen once a month, and it will be a comedy show hosted by three white guys. That’s basically the only difference” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Freaknik

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): At UCB Chelsea, improv group Grandma’s Ashes—which includes stellar talents Ryan Karels, Morgan Grace Jarrett, Brandon Scott Jones, and more—takes your written secrets and turns them into very funny improv scenes: Grandma’s Ashes: We Won’t Tell

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Nick Kanellis & Peter McNerney perform sharp improv at The Magnet as comedy duo Trike

[TOP PICK] 11:00 ($10): NYC’s heavy metal version of a sketch troupe, which provides odd, unsettling, and fearless dark comedy; in 2011 won the ECNY Award for Best Sketch Group; was recently written up by Jason Zinoman in The New York Times; and is spearheaded by Henry Zebrowski, who’s a co-star of Wolf of Wall Street, performing at The PIT downstairs lounge: Murderfist

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): Michelle Wolf (staff writer for Seth Meyers; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC) performs stand-up, while Anthony Apruzzese and a mob of other comics perform sketch at this hybrid variety/talk show co-hosted by Josh Sharp (GUMP) at the UCB East theatre: Showtime with Anthony Apruzzese

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): A hilarious collection of oddball characters posing as “the worst families in America,” plus over-the-top celebrity impersonations, from a small army of comics—tonight including Siobhan Thompson, James Coker, Marshall Stratton, Kat Toledo, and David Bluvband—performing at UCB Chelsea hosted by wonderful comics Riley Soloner (enormously likeable rising star; MTV, The Chris Gethard Show, Cage Match, Maude improv group Smalls) and/or Jason Saenz (sharp stand-up & sketch comic; Comedy Central, sketch group Onassis): Late Night Trash

[FREE] Midnight: A new monthly talk show hosted by Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central), tonight featuring Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan (amazing human boombox; The Daily Show, The Electric Company, Freestyle Love Supreme, co-host of Battlicious), Danny & Mike (The Adventures of Pete & Pete), John F. O’Donnell (Redacted Tonight), and Erik’s ex-girlfriend’s little sister Ashley Boman as his sidekick at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Aftermirth

Saturday Open Mics and Jams

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early weekly open mic stand-up show (“starts late enough to sleep off that hangover but ends just in time to begin a new one”) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Jhoel Walkowski & Evan Davis: The Amateur Hour

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Walk-in open mic comedy show—stand-up, character, or funny story—providing 5 minutes per comic at The Fifth Estate Bar (506 5th Avenue, off 12th Street) hosted by Meghan O’Keefe: Open Mic-hael Douglas

5:30 pm ($5): Walk-in open mic, with sign-up at 5:15 pm and each stand-up performing for 5 minutes, at the Comedy Village Comedy Club (107 MacDougal Street): Comedy Village

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.