(Host: Chad Weaver – Rialto Theatre – Kenmore, Ohio – August 4, 2017)
Guest Performers: Mike Strenk, Mike Calhoun, Jenny McClear, James Brassfield, Tabitha Jones, John Bruton, Wilson Rivera, Steve Mers, Ryne DiPerna, Flipcoin and Natalie Grace Martin.
“Concussion Are Cool”
Chad Weaver opens the show. He reveals he has five concussions from running into tunnels painted on walls. Cuz he’s a cartoon. LOL.
He once almost got “Chaddy Daddy” as a lower back tattoo.
Weaver remembers driving by his parent’s former home when his mother tells him that there was a gap in her and his father’s relationship. Chad immediately assumes his father was a badass who stole cars and spent time in prison. It turns out his parents took a break from dating.
He then goes off on a riff about magicians and clowns. (Imagine how many bodies would be in a clown car accident! Also: Meanest magician joke. “What is a magician’s best trick? Convincing themselves that their parents are proud of them.”)
He buzzes though a bit about losing his virginity with a stool. The second half of the bit is a terrific pre-recorded video set to “Rocket Man” by Elton John. (Weaver: “A lot of people argue that (the video) shouldn’t be four minutes.”)
“Are Nipples Supposed To Be That Small?”
Mike Strenk is introduced. Only the day before, he returned from a trip to Japan. Despite not being able to provide the Japanese customs official at the airport with the address of the friends he was staying with during the trip, he was still admitted into the country.
Wilson Rivera storms the stage and pummels Strenk with a pillow while he continues his set.
Strenk said he went to Hiroshima and cried because it still looks better than Akron.
He laments that he didn’t fuck anyone while in Japan.
Mike Calhoun is next to take the stage. He states that he is proud of Akron for not being one of the Top 10 cities in the state where heroin overdoses occur.
He says he is lonely because his girlfriend has been out of town. He is thinking of turning to a social media app. When he asks an audience member if they remember their first user name on social media, the guy replies, “LouieGFan91.”
Rivera attacks Calhoun with pillows. He is walloping him. Weaver dives in for the save.
Weaver: “I don’t like beating an unarmed minority on the ground.”
Strenk: “I don’t mind.”
Calhoun wraps with his observations about the old “Dick in the Popcorn” trick that is so popular on movie theater dates.
Strenk is deemed the “loser” between the two comics. Weaver asks for audience members to come up because Strenk’s punishment is that he has to crowd surf.
To an audience member: “You look like the heaviest lifting you’ve done is ‘Magic: The Gathering’ cards.”
Flipcoin is up. After taking their time fussing with their instruments, the two-piece band plays a very brief song called “Tight Lips Sail Ships.”
A video made by Ryne DiPerna airs entitled “Ill-Timed Delivery Guy.” I’ll just say it involves 9/11. It’s pretty great.
“I’m A Crew Sock, Motherfucker!”
Almost immediately upon taking the stage, James Brassfield is given a sock puppet by Weaver, who instructs him to do his set as the puppet. Brassfield notes that “Chad’s sock is smaller than my hand.” The puppet quickly loses one of its eyes.
Brassfield transitions into a bit about seeing someone that you haven’t in awhile who has lost weight.
McClear has recently moved here from Chicago. She has to contend with the sock puppet gimmick, too. She opines about the difficulty of being a “lady” and breastfeeding.
Neither Brassfield or McClear are declared the “loser.” That distinction goes to Ryne DiPerna, who has to act out a short play written by Chad with Steve Mers.
“Yer Gonna Need Chemo”
Weaver and Brassfield perform a skit about a doctor and nurse. Chad is a doctor who can cure an injury by kissing the area in question. Strenk comes out with a hurt knee. Dr. Weaver kisses it and all is well. Next, a patient shows up with a gunshot wound to the abdomen. When DiPerna comes out in a diaper because he has cancer of the “dick and balls”…well, you can imagine how the skit ends.
Flipcoin is back up to bat. This time the duo (Tom Fulton & Ben Wolgamuth) bust through a three-song set (“Alex the Postman,” “Rats,” and “Bad Spel”). The two switch instruments and vocal duties for each number.
Burying The Lead
I am only loosely acquainted with Chad Weaver, so I was surprised when he announced that he will be moving to Chicago next month. September 2 will be the final Thrill or be ThrilledT event…at least in Akron.
“Go Get Me Pizza”
John Bruton is introduced. He is grumbling to himself that he hates performing after a music segment. He begins to roast the members of Flipcoin, who are sitting near the stage.
Weaver comes up and wants him to insult members of the audience. He directs him first to a guy wearing a black shirt. Next, Chad points to his own aunt. Bruton passes on roasting her. However, next to her was seated the boyfriend of Chad’s sister. Bruton starts zinging him hard, asking personal questions about their relationship. Chad got visibly nervous. He ends Bruton’s segment and tells a story about the first time he met John Bruton. Bruton told him to go get a pizza, and he did. I’ve noted this before, a large part of the TobT’d dynamic comes from Weaver making the comics nervous on stage and seeing how they react. Bruton turned it on him.
“I’m Not Good At This”
Tabitha Jones is the final performer of the evening. Weaver skips having her do prepared material and goes straight to directing her to insult the audience. She says that she is not good at insulting people goes ahead anyway.
She gets off a couple funny lines about Chad’s aunt and dad.
Chad then cuts in and tells a story about his childhood babysitter “Joyce” and another about roasting he sister at her graduation party.
Jones is then deemed the “loser” of the segment. Her punishment is to read a spooky story (penned by Weaver) while Martin and a gentleman from the audience puff vape steam at her.
The stuff that comprised the end of the show is what makes Chad Weaver’s comedy experiments great. It’s either weird, uncomfortable, too personal or perplexing—but it’s never boring. I’m really gonna miss Thrill or be Thrilled when it’s gone.
Final show: September 2nd