Spit Take Saturday: Kyle Kinane

image004Welcome to Spit Take Saturday, courtesy of Brown Paper Tickets’ Comedy Doer Julie Seabaugh and her professional comedy criticism site The Spit Take. Julie’s goal with the site is to “elevate the public perception of stand-up comedy to that of a legitimate art form, and to enable comedy criticism be taken as seriously as that of theater, film, music, food, even video games. No a**-kissing. No bias. No mercy. Just honest, unfiltered, long-form reviews written by professional, knowledgeable comedy critics.” 

Every week Julie will select an entry from the site to be included on our blog and hand-pick some related events happening that week that she feels all you comedy lovers out there will appreciate.

So, without further ado, let us introduce you to this week’s Spit Take Saturday!

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“I want comedy to be taken as an art form,” Kyle Kinane says about two-thirds through his excellent special “Whiskey Icarus.” “I feel I put just as much heart and blood, sweat and tears into this as any musician or any sculptor, and I want it to be appreciated as such.” He then tells a short story in which he acts immaturely, eventually juxtaposing his earlier statement with “And that’s why I’m not an artist.”

Those 40 seconds capture the essence of Kinane’s comedy. The man’s a thinker. On a superficial level, the stories he tells of drunken shenanigans are just that: comedic bits with little substance beneath the words. But the personal touch he embeds into every strain of every anecdote is what gives his comedy that artistic integrity for which he strives. It’s the tone in his voice, the glances toward the floor, the pauses and the stammers in his cadence. There’s a struggle, and it’s at the heart of his act.

Kinane says at the top of the special that he believes a lot of comedy comes from “shared experiences—things that we can relate to.” His own comedy, though, is entirely rooted in his personal experiences, which points to a phenomenon of sorts: the more personal the comedy is, the more relatable it becomes.


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San Francisco: Get Ready for Halloween with Shocktoberfest 12!

October is upon us and thus begins the season of all things dark, creepy and sinister. Over the next month, I’ll be featuring events that set the mood for Halloween and the first event that caught my eye was Shocktoberfest in San Francisco.

This trio of noir-horror plays is celebrating its 12th year and is a collaboration between San Fransisco’s renowned Thrillpeddlers and author Eddie Muller, who wrote the evening’s plays. The Thrillpeddlers have been around for nearly two decades and specialize in authentic Grand Guignol horror productions. The Theatre Du Grand Guignol was located in the Pigalle neighborhood of Paris and was open from 1897 to 1962. It specialized in horror shows and today the term Grand Guignol is used to describe a wide range of graphic horror entertainment, ranging from Elizabethan theater to modern splatter films.
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