An Evening With Mike Lawrence and Dan St. Germain @ Comix, 9/16/10
Comic Sean Donnelly made an apt host for this show of three emerging comedians – Mike Recine, Mike Lawrence, and Dan St. Germain – whose conversational style with the audience added effortless flow in between sets, and his own jokes were right on par with those of the comics he introduced.
Kicking off the evening as a feature was Mike Recine,whose set included material ranging from inept pedophiles all the way to Billy Mays, and I’m pretty sure there was an inappropriate Old Yeller reference in there somewhere too. Recine’s style is very dry, and his jokes themselves are funny, but it’s his tongue-in-cheek delivery that really seals the deal. Recine has toned down the vulgarity in his material, making his jokes more intelligent and more palatable to a wider audience, trading in the niche role of the profane comic for something smarter and wittier.
Next up we saw Mike Lawrence, a talented comic and self-proclaimed nerd whose shtick revolves around childhood, comic books and getting laid (or lack thereof). Decked out in glasses, a beard, and a shirt that featured more Marvel characters than anyone even knew existed, Lawrence kept the punchlines rolling with his awkward demeanor and understated charisma. Lawrence’s material tends to deal with already funny subject matter (drunk girls, fatigued drag queens, masturbation), laying the foundation to paint them into a scenario where they become immensely funnier, proving his talent for the analogitic joke. Relaying the time he was challenged to a “nerd off” by someone who claimed to have seen the original Star Wars in the theater over 70 times, Lawrence held his own on stage referencing Mortal Kombat, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Batman, and the Terminator among others. Despite his awkward stage persona, Lawrence’s set was anything but.
Dan St. Germain opened his set with this sentiment – “Each comic looks more homeless than the last,” and actually, summed up the lineup pretty well in doing so. “It’s not a comedy show – it’s a fundraiser!” St. Germain sported an interesting combo of a wild beard with long, straightish hair, and began his set with a tried-and-true warming of a New Yorker’s heart – the bodega, with its random and never ending selection of goods, reggaeton music, and of course the requisite street cat. He immediately had the audience laughing insanely, as if suburbia was sitting across the room, the joke flying right over its picket-fenced head. St. Germain’s material is widely observational, and he has a special talent for picking out the funny in often banal circumstances. It’s clear these comics hang out together, as one segued into another, covering the same range of topics (pedophiles, being broke, and quirks about New York City), making the show more of a collaborative team effort than a competitive one. Check them out on the web and don’t miss an opportunity to see them live.