Thursday, November 3, 2016

Dane Cook leaves them laughing in London

Laughter could be heard spilling out of Budweiser Gardens Wednesday night as the Just for Laughs comedy tour brought Dane Cook to town for one night only. Having been selected as the Bud Gardens reviewer for this event, I went in with an open mind, prepared for an evening of fun, but unsure of what to expect. I need not have worried though, because the 90 minutes that followed were filled with laughter and winks at my other half when jokes were made that fell close to home. I would swear Cook’s rant on one spouse being mad at the other for not doing dishes was directed right at us…only in his story, the wife was the primary dishwasher which really messes up the story I’ve told my husband for years that dishes are and always have been the role of the husband in any loving relationship. Oops. 

Despite being busted for that little white lie, I enjoyed the remainder of Cook’s set which was an entertaining mix of advice and warnings about love, marriage and commitment, and true to any Cook show – sex. It also contained something that is rare for a live comedy show…a question and answer session as an ‘encore’. I’m not sure that I’ve seen that before, and can’t help but wonder how many comedians would be confident enough to answer the most awkward questions on the fly the way Cook was able to. It’s a skill to be sure, and one that Cook has mastered. 

The audience was appreciative of the occasional updates from Cook as to how the historic game 7 of the World Series between the Cubs and Indians was going. I’m quite certain there were at least a handful of people in the crowd who wished both events hadn’t fallen on the same night including one gentleman in particular who was busted by Cook when it became apparent by his helpful yelling that he was sitting in his seat, watching the game on his phone.

Of course, no great entertainer comes out without an opening act, and the crowd on this night was treated to two. Vinny Fasline was the first act up – never an enviable spot – but easily won over the crowd with his jokes and his perspective on living life despite adversity…his, being diagnosed with a brain tumour as a teen. He was funny, real and gained a new fan in me. I hope he goes far in his career. 

He introduced the second comedian of the night, John Campanelli who has been referred to as “a comedian for the people”. His material was fresh, relevant and very, very funny. And, although you would never know it, following the show he shared with his Twitter followers (of which I am now one) that this was his very first arena show ever. You never would have known it! 

All in all, it was a great night of comedy and I’m incredibly appreciative to Bud Gardens for allowing me to be part of this entertaining night. I hope we continue to see more top rate comedians grace the stage of the Bud, as there certainly seems to be the audience for it! 

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