Power Violence Recap 2/19/2012 Sunday 9:30 The Complex in Hollywood

by Comedy Recap

Power Violence runs every Sunday at 9:30 at  The Complex 6470 Santa Monica Blvd. in Hollywood.

If you look up the word “powerviolence” on Wikipedia you find it’s a musical subgenre of hardcore punk, who’s sound was typified by bands emphasizing speed, brevity, bizarre timing breakdowns, and constant tempo changes. Traits surely shared with the show PowerViolence’s sketches, which are bizarre, fluid, and brief. The show itself has rage, optimism, and fraternal machismo that musical experts might more closely associate with “youth crew,” another subgenre of hardcore, from the late eighties. But myself being more of a film buff, I kept feeling like I was watching scenes from,”The Outsiders” whenever I’d see Budd, Whit, Clay and Rodney interact.

The show has a very DIY yourself vibe. It’s a free show with free beer, but they strongly encourage donations. I showed up early and they had skate videos playing on the screen in the theater so I just sat down and watched that for about 15 minutes.

Power Violence is hosted by Whitmer Thomas, Clay Tatum, Budd Diaz, & Rodney Berry and the four took the stage together, in a ruckus; falling all over the place. Throwing boxes and wrestling around, they accidentally punched a sizable hole in the wall. Whitmer thanked everyone for coming and they talked a little about the hole, they had just created. Budd kept laughing at everything in a weird way, sounding a little like Ed McMahon’s laugh. The guys called him out on it and he told them he was taking an acting class and this was his new laugh. They asked for someone in the audience who definitely wasn’t funny to come on stage and read some unfunny tweets to prove that Budd was laughing weird. Some guy named Joe came up and all the PV guys agreed that Joe wasn’t funny, so he read a few unfunny tweets and Budd laughed weird at all of them.

Then they introduced a video that cast Budd Diaz as Dick Cachairen a smooth talking but inept salesmen looking  to sell you a tiny fan for cooling down pizza slices. You can watch that sketch here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1uHJXgOqdEM

They then brought on the first comic, Jeff Tepper. Jeff does absurd jokes accompanied by a  bizarre  Powerpoint presentation. He started by talking about Robocop riding a unicorn, then Stephen Hawking, and a shark as woman’s vagina, with hand drawn slides to help you visualize what he’s saying. The middle portion of Jeff’s act was about movie sequels he’s written and he had the movie posters to go along with them (How Stella Got Her Groove Back to The Future.) He closed with a bit about going to Vegas where his friend Dan snorted Viagra and his dick got so big that it circumnavigated the globe. The last few slides showed Dan’s dick making it’s way into the Complex Theater where the show was taking place and that’s when a giant penis emerged from behind one of the stage doors being held by Budd Diaz.

After Jeff Tepper’s set The Power Violence gang was back on stage and they asked Budd if he would come out on stage as Dan’s Dick. Budd reluctantly obliged and took a seat  n the middle of the stage, holding a giant inflatable penis in his lap. After a few questions, Budd went backstage and dropped the penis off before emerging again as himself. Then the gang gave Budd a denim jacket so he’d look cool and they asked him to pop his collar and say something tough. Budd said,”Yer Dead,” and they brought out the next performer, who Whitmer described as The King of Bad Boy Comedy, Mike Burns.

Mike, who was also wearing a denim jacket, started his set by talking about the time he was almost murdered. He went on to talk about the similarities between taking your girlfriend to a Ryan Gosling movie and watching porno with her. From here he transitioned easily into talking about dick pills and how kids today won’t ever know the terror of trying to eject a dirty VHS tape as their parent’s car pulls into the driveway. He closed his set talking about dating sites, specifically how the availability of the username “PizzaNachos69” made him choose OkCupid over Match.com. He also read the personal information from his OkCupid profile.

Next up, was Ron Babcock who started by talking about the hole in the wall. He went on to talk about cancelling his gym membership, travelling outside of LA, and confirming that you’re in a relationship on Facebook. He talked about snuggling, pretending to be a pug, and not being able to fall asleep while spooning.

The next performer was Jess Lane who started by giving the audience step-by-step instructions of how to fold a fitted sheet. She went on to talk about tagging all her ex-boyfriends names in an ultrasound photo she posted to Facebook. She covered looking pregnant and all-liquid diets. She talked about getting high from Excedrin, and the idea that if you draw a perfect circle you’re crazy. Jess closed with a bit about a woman who married the Eiffel Tower, which technically made the woman a lesbian because La Tour Eiffel is feminine.

Then, Andy Ritchie took the stage and riffed a little on Jess Lane’s closing bit, by talking about how no one would ever marry the Leaning Tower of Pisa.  Andy just moved back to LA and found a place to live on Craigslist, so he talked about that. His new apartment’s shower-head is rusted shut on the massage setting. He talked about seeing a sign for a missing falcon named Balthazar, as well as conspiracy theories, and getting his eyes examined at a Target. Andy closed his set talking about a “Choosy Moms Choose Life” bumpersticker.

Aparna Nancherla was next and talked first about deciding between taking the stairs or just hopping up on stage, which she conceded was very un-punk. She confessed that she was wearing socks with individual toes and told us what it’s like to be heckled by your own mother. She talked about laundromats, wine gut, and what makes a pizza, “personal pan.” She also discussed Gospel Aerobics, parking tickets quitting their day-job, and race jokes.

Up next was Hampton Yount who started by talking about an undercover Robocop. Then, Hampton did an impression of a pregnant Steven Seagal giving birth to a baby ninja. He talked about overhearing a conversation Soulja Boy was having, while at work at MTV. My notes are a little jumbled at this point, but I think the last part of his act was about how he’ll miss the banner ads from Myspace, that asked you to “Swat the Flies, & Win a Free I-Pad” and how he’s not fit to raise children. At some point in his set Hampton broke a folding chair.

Greg Barris followed Hampton and again my notes are jumbled but I think Greg began his set talking about his show rituals, and being drunk at the bank. He talked about getting older and receiving advice from his father on the balcony of a cruise ship. He went on to talk about gender issues, dildos, nightcaps, cocktails on the roof, and waking up tied to a chair.

Nick Turner began his set by talking about how God wouldn’t let him be happy and Park Rangers not fucking in the woods. He asked the audience if they could give him any pain pills because he has a dislocated toe, no insurance, and a $3000 hospital bill; so he can’t afford the pills, himself.

After Nick’s set Rodney Berry was onstage when he was interrupted by the other PV hosts who were dressed in costume wearing bright, sparkly ball-caps. They told Rodney that they were the cast of “Oh My Ribs!” (a play or musical that’s running a few doors down, in the same complex as Power Violence.) The “Oh My Ribs”  Fellas sang a jingle to bring out the next performer, Justin Ian Daniels.

Justin began by thanking the The “Oh My Ribs” Guys for the best intro of all time. He went on to talk about how body parts of murder victims are popping up all over Los Angeles and no one seems to mind. He talked about “Battleship: The Game: The Movie” and also about kids screaming on a plane.  In his bit about dream cars he said he would rather own eighty-seven Hyundai Elantra’s than one Porsche or Ferrari. He talked about the show, “Intervention” and the Cincinnati Pepper Grinder. He closed his set reading slogans he’d written to be used in place of “Beef. It’s Whats for Dinner.”

Whitmer came back up and closed the show, thanking everyone for coming and everyone who performed.

You can follow all of these performers on Twitter:

https://twitter.com/#!/PowerViolenceLA

https://twitter.com/#!/whitmerthomas

https://twitter.com/#!/claytatum

https://twitter.com/#!/buddanthonydiaz

https://twitter.com/#!/rodney_berry

https://twitter.com/#!/Jefftherooster (Jeff Tepper)

https://twitter.com/#!/pizzanachos69 (Mike Burns)

https://twitter.com/#!/ronbabcock

https://twitter.com/#!/notjesslane

https://twitter.com/#!/colormebadder (Andy Ritchie)

https://twitter.com/#!/aparnapkin (Aparna Nancherla)

https://twitter.com/#!/Hamptonyount

https://twitter.com/#!/gregbarris

https://twitter.com/#!/itsmenickyt (Nick Turner)

https://twitter.com/#!/funnyjustin (Justin Ian Daniels)

FOLLOW POWER VIOLENCE ON TUMBLR http://powerviolencecomedy.tumblr.com/

Thanks for reading! Please submit your own recaps!

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