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Last Comic Standing, Episode 4: When Stupidity Takes Holdby Dale Sherman & Mike DeGeorge -- 06/25/2003
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Sometimes you do stupid things in the heat of anger. The bad part is that everyone around you realizes it and may even try to step in to stop you before you do it, but you take no notice of their rational thinking. All you care about is doing your stupid thing. Then, once you’re following through on your actions, everything slows down and you suddenly realize what a bad move you’re making.
Case in point: A few years ago, my wife and I were living in a great apartment that had no central-air. And in Kentucky during the summer, you really need central air. Otherwise, you end up spending the entire summer talking in a drone like some drugged-out version of the Weather Channel permanently set at “8 after the hour.”
“It was 82 today, with the humidity at 98%. It will be 76 tonight with humidity at 84%. Hey we really should check out Main Auto Parts for all our auto needs . . ..”
Unfortunately, all we had was a clunky air-conditioner that sat in the windowsill of the dining room. Actually, more like hanging by a thread, as the window had to be kept tightly in place on top of this 800-pound dinosaur or else gravity would take over and the thing would go flying down to the concrete twenty feet below. So there was no way to open the window to let in fresh air if you didn’t want to turn the thing on; and if you did turn it on, it buzzed so loud that you couldn’t hear anyone in the dining room anyway.
One weekend we decided to have a little get-together at the apartment. The day wasn’t that humid, so my wife and I decided we would just open up some windows around the house. Nice idea, but hard to accomplish, as all the windows in this old apartment had been painted over so many times that you had to really struggle with them. So after a lot of swearing and cursing, we got a few open. Then I saw my wife sitting in the dining room, looking over at the window with the air-conditioner in it.
“We really should open that one up,” she said.
I was hot, and tired, and a bit aggravated. “So why isn’t this one open yet?”
“It’s got the air-conditioner in it and –”
“So? Geez, just open it up and take the air-conditioner out. What’s the problem?”
“Dale, you can’t do that.”
Of course, I was thinking my wife believed I was too weak to handle the air-conditioner. So suddenly it became a macho issue.
“Oh, it’s not that heavy! I can pull it out once I open the window.”
“No, you can’t open the window unless you hold on to the –”
“Listen! I can do this! Just let me do this! It won’t take a second! Then we’ll be done! I can do this! Geez!!”
So she backs away and leans against the wall to watch. I turn back to the window, lift up on the window holding the air-conditioner in place…
…and the air-conditioner went flying out of the window, hitting the concrete twenty feet below, and smashing the air-conditioner to bits. I turned back to see my wife leaning against the wall with her arms folded. A smirk was on her face as she nodded her head.
And, of course, the only thing you can say at a moment like that is the obvious. “You see? Now it’s out of the window. Problem solved.”
I thought about this story while watching Episode Four of Last Comic Standing. Why? We’ll get to that in a bit, but first, some news on the program:
Coming into the third week of Last Comic Standing, NBC is very happy with how the series is going so far. Episode Three helped NBC win Tuesday for the second week in the row, with 8.4 million people watching the program. Some reviewers have jumped on this as a sign that the series is dead in the water already, as it is lower than the premiere week, but the series still ranked 14th for the week, which is not shabby at all. Thanks to this, there are unconfirmed reports that NBC plans on doing at least two more seasons of the series. Hopefully they can fine-tune the concept a bit more the next time around, as viewers and even industry insiders are confused about certain aspects of the program.
Questions from viewers who write to us here at RNO show that they are a bit thrown by two elements of the show (well, that and a majority being stunned that Eddie Pepitone did not make it to the house . . . but that’s another story entirely). One troubling element is the whole “living in the house for a few weeks” situation on the program. No one seems to be sure exactly what this will mean as far as how the ten remaining finalists will be reduced to a “final five” for the last episode.
Even articles in various papers and online sources seem confused by this function of the show. Some have suggested that the contestants will be shown in the house for a certain portion of the program, and then two comedians selected from the ten will be paired off to each do a routine for viewers at home. Viewers at home will then vote off one of the two each week until only five remain.
This would make sense, but now other reports cropping up state that the show will instead have the comedians themselves vote off someone each week from the house. However, the “comic showdown” portion of each episode, where the routines will be done, will allow audience members to grant “immunity” to a particular comic. How that is supposed to work if the comedians in the house have already voted someone off, is anyone’s guess.
As can be seen, there is real confusion about how people are to be eliminated on the program. Hopefully, we’ll be able to get a better idea once we take a look at Episode Four below.
Another element of the program that is confusing some viewers is one that we have brought up before and that is of the eligibility of certain contestants to be on the program. Many people have written in, pointing out that they have seen a few of the comics on other programs recently. Co-writer Mike DeGeorge has his take on the whole “conspiracy” here, and readers should give that a look before letting the theories get completely out of hand.1 2 3 4 5 Next-->
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