On Monday evening, July 5th, NBC aired the semi-final competition of their seventh season of Last Comic Standing. A popular summer show hosted by The Office’s Craig Robinson, this season is proving to be just as exciting as previous ones. There is no lack for talent as the semifinal group of more than 40 is weeded down to a group of ten.
On the Alex stage in Glendale, Calif., in front of a huge audience every one of the comics presented a unique character with quirky points of view. I laughed. I laughed a lot. I laughed until Guy Torry.
Then I just felt awkward.
Being Canadian, I enjoy humor about U.S. politics as much as most Americans. Because our own politicians aren’t as charismatic, some may say I enjoy the political antics south of the 49th parallel even more than the average American. Thinking back on GuyTorry’s set, I don’t believe that it was his material that was the issue.
While pacing the stage like a caged animal, Torry ventured that the Ku Klux Klan was in support of voting for President Obama in 2008 because of the recession. He joked that the KKK couldn’t afford the 800-thread count sheets they once used and now are visible behind a 200-thread count discount sheet. This seemed to be the only stab at an actual joke in a long rant of negativity about Obama.
This line of humor is definitely borderline but what sent it into the “I’m uncomfortable watching this” stage was his belligerent attitude after his set toward the audience and the judges. He shouted at the judges to “Google it, Google it!” when they questioned his comedy source and told the female judge her opinion didn’t matter because she would never attend one of his shows anyway.
Why was he here, then, if the judge and audience opinions didn’t matter? Was it just to seek attention, even if the attention is bad? What was his anger directed at, or for whom?
I could not see through Torry’s anger to understand his comedic point. Proverbs 22:24 warns us against making friends with “a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared.” (NIV)
The audience was in agreement and the hot-tempered Guy Torry will not be moving on to the finals. I sighed with relief.