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November 16, 2017

Don’t call Hari Kondabolu a political comedian.

“I don’t talk about Democrats and Republicans,” the New Yorker says. “I don’t care so much about the ‘inside the Beltway’ stuff.”

Nevertheless, he has built a career observing and lampooning the American social order. Along with W. Kamau Bell he hosts the feisty podcast Politically Re-Active, and this month Kondabolu’s documentary The Problem with Apu premiers on truTV. 

May 11, 2017

W. Kamau Bell is a sociopolitical comedian and host of the CNN docu-series United Shades of America. Before launching the show last season, Bell was probably best known for his critically acclaimed — and criminally short-lived — comedy series, Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell.

November 19, 2015

Look around and you’ll find the seeds of a comedy scene germinating in Eugene. More and more, nationally touring comics are stopping to perform locally, and several venues — such as Luckey’s, The Green Room and Sam Bond’s — are hosting comedy nights.

A cornerstone of Eugene comedy is the NW Women’s Comedy Festival, now entering its 10th year. 

Festival founder Leigh Anne Jasheway says that in the early years the event was the only women’s comedy festival between Seattle and northern California. 

June 25, 2015

Comedian, author and actress Jen Kirkman is known for appearing on Chelsea Handler’s talk show Chelsea Lately and for being one of the first comedians to sign up for Drunk History.

In 2013, Kirkman released the New York Times bestselling memoir, I Can Barely Take Care of Myself: Tales from a Happy Life Without Kids

April 6, 2015

It’s rare that college students watch a senate hearing on C-SPAN and then decide to try and change the world.

After comedian Seth Rogen delivered a statement on Alzheimer’s Research in February 2014, however, it was hard not to sympathize with his cause. Rogen explained that more than five million Americans have Alzheimer’s (including his own mother-in-law) and that nearly 16 million Americans will have the disease in the next 35 years. Research also suggests that deaths caused by Alzheimer’s have increased almost 70 percent in the last 15 years.

December 4, 2014

Carly Aquilino has been doing standup for less than three years and she’s already got a hit show — millennial favorite Girl Code, a comedy series where women in entertainment “weigh in on the sisterhood that all girls share” — and a cult following: In a recent episode, a fan gets Aquilino’s face tattooed on her thigh (another fan shaved her face into his back…). EW caught up with Aquilino over the phone from her New York apartment. She brings her act to Eugene for the first time Dec. 6 at McDonald Theatre.


October 23, 2014

America’s favorite hot-tempered comedian and social critic Lewis Black returns to Eugene Oct. 30 and he’s madder than ever, in a clever, “LMFAO” sort of way. EW caught up with Black to yell about everything from voter suppression and being a socialist to Oregon’s efforts to legalize recreational marijuana and the downfalls of the 21st century. Under Black’s flame, no topic, politician or village idiot walks away unscathed. To read the full interview, visit eugeneweekly.com.


June 5, 2014

Brent Weinbach is goofy, strange and smart — the perfect combo for a comedian coming to Eugene. He’s your Renaissance everyman: A former professional jazz pianist, Weinbach writes and co-directs the web series Pound House, hosts a podcast on video game music that predates the millennium, and has appeared on reigning comedy platforms like Conan, Comedy Central, HBO and IFC as well as touring with the Comedians of Comedy.

May 1, 2014

Renowned for her sparkly, good-natured ad-lib ability, entertainer Carol Burnett graciously carved out a new role for women in film and television — one in which they could be funny and smart. Amy Poehler, Tina Fey, Kirsten Wiig and many others stand on Burnett’s shoulders. Now you can see this laugh-riot giant in real life, as the kids say these days, at the Hult May 7.

April 17, 2014

If you don’t know who Doug Benson is by now, you very well may not be smoking enough weed. The standup comedian (Gateway Doug), actor (The Greatest Movie Ever Rolled) and podcast veteran (Doug Loves Movies, Getting Doug with High) has made Eugene a regular stop four years running for his 4/21 show at WOW Hall. EW caught up with the green funnyman to talk shop, pot, podcasts and more.


April 15, 2014

You know him from the internet, his standup comedy and his character “Pig Bottom” on Tubbin’ with Tash on YouTube. He doesn’t shy away from mainstream screens either; Moshe Kasher has also been featured on Chelsea Lately, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon and Conan. He is also a writer for the sitcom The New Normal and author of memoir Kasher in the Rye (which is reviewed by William Kennedy in EW’s April 17 issue).

March 24, 2014

Aziz Ansari is a comedian with the zeitgeist nipping at his heels. Having found fame and a devoted following first with MTV’s comedy sketch show Human Giant,  and then playing the loveable trend-chaser Tom Haverford on Parks and Recreation, followed by rapid-fire releases of his comedy specials, Ansari is now tackling contemporary courtship, literally — like in a book. Romance and relationships in a tech-drunk world are at the heart of his upcoming book, Modern Romance, and tour of the same name, which comes to Eugene this Thursday, March 27.

March 6, 2014

Tiny Tavern is putting its funny where its mouth is. The revamped Whiteaker bar hosts frequent comedy open mics with Mac Chase at the helm, and now local comedian Isaac Paris has booked “Comics in Glasses: Entertaining the Masses,” featuring the comic prowess of Torontonian David Heti, an “offbeat genius” a la Woody Allen (with the mug of a blond Adrian Brody), and “nerdcore folk duo” The Doubleclicks, a Portland sister act that sings about Pride and Prejudice heartthrob Mr.

January 23, 2014

Birbiglia became the poster boy for REM (rapid eye movement) behavior disorder and self-deprecating laughs after cataloging his slumbering escapades (like jumping through a second-story window) in Sleepwalk With Me. Now, Birbiglia is on a 100-city tour — his biggest yet — for the new comedy special Thank God for Jokes; he’s still making the everyday hilarious, e.g., kissing is weird when you really think about it. EW caught up with the comedian on the road.


What’s on your mind today?

December 19, 2013

Want to add a little more chaos to your holiday season? Director and founder of Camerosity Improv Theater Tim O’Donnell and friends have A Camerosity Christmas in the works. I checked in with O’Donnell and actor Joseph Tanner Paul to get the latest on their raucous, unscripted holiday show. 

December 12, 2013

“The four of us are kind of like sisters,” Vicki Silvers tells me over coffee pre-snowstorm at Noisette Pastry Kitchen, with her other “sister” Debbie Martin in tow. She’s speaking of the four women who make up WYMPROV!, a pioneering comedy improv group whose legacy in Eugene dates back more than two decades to its “Debut and Farewell” show at Agate Hall. Martin nods, adding that the foursome is supportive of each other on stage and off, getting together for frequent dinners and continuing “to get together and play.”

November 7, 2013

There’s nothing more attractive than a funny woman (or rather, a funny person). Forget what the world of advertising tries to tell us; true beauty doesn’t rest with spherical breasts south of a perfectly placed Monroe mole (or washboard abs south of a cleft chin). It lies with a person who can master perfect timing or who can observe the subtle hilarity in everyday life and discuss it on stage with only a microphone.

October 10, 2013

Not many comics can hold a mic to Dave Chappelle. His mixture of parody and social critique is revered as today’s gold standard of comedy. After trading a skyrocketing career for a life of privacy back in 2005, he’s back on the national stage. Word has traveled fast about his now-infamous August show in Hartford, Conn., which he ended early because of some imbecile hecklers. This week, Eugene has the chance to witness something just short of a comedy miracle: two live Chappelle shows in one night at McDonald Theatre. So please, Eugene, do everyone a solid and zip it.

May 9, 2013

You know him as the voice of Gene on Bob’s Burgers and as a motley crew of characters on Adult Swim, but Comedian Eugene Mirman is perhaps most revered for his baritone stand-up: a slew of silliness, irreverence and observation. His latest Comedy Central special, Eugene Mirman: An Evening in a Fake Underground Laboratory, was given an A- by the A.V. Club, which Mirman says is “wonderfully reasonable.”


Have you ever been to a town that shares your name?

April 18, 2013

April 21 may as well be the new 4/20, as far as Eugene and comedian Doug Benson are concerned. The seminal stoner and star of Super High Me returns to WOW Hall for his 3rd annual celebration of giggling and giggle weed, hot off releasing his on-the-road documentary The Greatest Movie Ever Rolled — to continue in the vein of pot variations on a Morgan Spurlock theme — on Chill.com. Also the host of the Doug Loves Movies podcast, Benson sounds off on his favorite and most despised films of 2013, smoking with the stars and legalizing marijuana.

April 4, 2013

Don’t let her sweet, Midwestern accent and bits about her pug Bert fool you — Maria Bamford is one of the bravest comedians of our time. The veteran stand-up comic, who openly talks about being bipolar II, tackles mental illness with a hilarious fearlessness that eases the mind like popping Xanax.

March 28, 2013

Before Hannibal Buress started doing stand-up comedy at 19 in Chicago, he wanted to be the “black Howard Stern.” Since then he’s written for Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock and has appeared on Louie, Conan and Jimmy Kimmel Live! In 2012, he released his first Comedy Central special “Animal Furnace,” and now he’s working on his new web series Talking to Strangers, in which he interviews musicians like The Root’s Questlove. Just don’t ask him when it premieres, because, well, he has no idea. 

March 7, 2013

Mustachioed Renaissance man John Hodgman has accomplished pretty much everything a nerd-dandy could ever want: doling out advice for McSweeney’s, serving as humor editor for The New York Times Magazine, contributing to This American Life, appearing on The Daily Show, Battlestar Gallactica and Community, and writing a trilogy of deliciously fictional almanacs. Now, he takes on stand-up comedy, or his own esoteric, foppish version of it.

January 17, 2013

Comedian Paula Poundstone has one memory of Eugene that stands out more than the rest. “There was a billboard that said ‘The wages of sin are death,’ Poundstone tells EW, of the Romans 6:23 signage near the airport. “The Bible can be so uplifting.”