5. LOUIS CK
Here’s the problem: we don’t get FX here in Canada, and your Comedy Central is a bit different than ours.
So my first impression of Louis CK was, unfortunately, his drunk tweets about Sarah Palin and Trig.
Which weren’t funny.
When Sarah Silverman says, “When I say ‘gay,’ I just mean it like ‘retarded,’” I laugh (and steal the line). Frank J mocked George W. Bush for eight years, and did it so brilliantly that some readers didn’t realize Frank J voted for the guy, twice.
But those drunk tweets of Louis CK were just turds.
Maybe I’m just being a contrarian (see above) in the face of desperate non-stop hipster boosterism – Louis CK has quickly become the Kevin Smith of non-obese beta males — or maybe I stubbornly can’t shake that first impression.
Look, I feel stupid even saying this: Louis CK’s effortlessly natural delivery really is a joy to behold. He has a laudable work ethic. He’s clearly highly intelligent. He employs people I like.
I got off seeing him making
$200,000 in four days $750,000 last week $1-million in about 10 days [PS: is he wearing velour there...?] by taking a risk and trusting/rewarding his huge fan base. Nasty capitalist that I am, I teared up reading about how he did it, and no, I’m not being sarcastic.
Louis CK has said things I admire as artistry, like “their hands look like guns,” which has the same superconcentrated, “coal-into-diamond”-like quality as the four-line poem that launched the career of Margaret Atwood.
But… I just don’t care.
The “Mona Lisa” is supposedly the greatest painting ever, too. It makes me go “engh.”
Here’s what I’m talking about:
In this interview, Louis CK goes from offering a truly insightful explanation of the fallout from Tracy Morgan’s controversial “homophobic” joke, to ending the interview with (and this is the actual transcript):
I think the opportunity that was lost was for the gay community to ask Tracy, “why did you say that’ and ‘what was your dad like”and “what is being a man mean to you,” you know what I mean? It could have been a starting point of a conversation that might have actually made a difference in how people feel about homophobia.
And right there, Louis CK sounds like the kind of person a comedian (like Louis CK) is supposed to be making fun of.
Yes, I agree — this is neat:
But it’s also half wrong. As Mark Steyn points out:
I was at a college graduation in Vermont a few weeks ago, and the big shot speaker who had flown in from New York told these 21-year-olds, “You are living in such a fast-moving world.” I thought this was ridiculous. In the book I used the example of an HG Wells type time traveler, if you put him on the old time travel machine in 1890 and propelled him forward to 1950, he would be astonished, and he would be in his 1890 kitchen, 60 years later everything would be different.
He’d be amazed by the refrigerator, he’d be amazed by the full sound of an orchestra coming from a little box on the countertop. He’d be amazed by the station wagon pulling into the drive. Man conquered night with the electric light bulb, conquered distance with the invention of the internal combustion engine. He would be amazed by the telephone, he would be amazed that you could book an aeroplane flight to Los Angeles or to London or to Sydney.
We propel him on another 60 years to our time, from 1950 to our time, and actually the kitchen looks pretty much the same. The fridge is a little less bulky and it may have an ice water thing in it, but there’s really no difference, the phone has got buttons instead of a dial, again, basically not really different. Long distance travel takes actually longer in many ways than it did back in the 1950s, and we are supposed to be impressed because Steve Jobs at Apple has invented a slightly smaller gizmo on which you can download Lady Gaga or Justin Bieber.
I don’t think that’s enough, yet people do, people say it’s fantastic, have you seen the new iBox7, it used to be an inch and a quarter for downloading Justin Bieber on, but now it’s an inch and an eighth. Big deal, I don’t think that’s enough.
Be honest: if you’re looking for genius or something like it, isn’t Steyn’s take patently superior?