Television

Killing Jokes

Comedian Patton Oswalt has some funny feelings about NBC's Last Comic Standing

To watch NBC's reality comedy contest ''Last Comic Standing'' with a comedian is to get the ultimate insider's view: It's like watching ''Survivor'' with Gilligan. EW sat down for the July 13 episode at the L.A. house of ''The King of Queens''' Patton Oswalt, 35, who just released his first stand-up CD, ''Feelin' Kinda Patton.'' Full disclosure: ''Comic'' was marked on Oswalt's TiVo with three thumbs down. ''After I saw the first show, it was `Die, motherf -- -er!''' he says. But America has given the show's second season three thumbs up: It averages 8.9 million viewers and just landed a last-minute slot on NBC's fall schedule. Given its success, EW asked Oswalt for a little ''Comic'' relief.

1 min., 27 sec. A recap of Ant's losing airline routine. ''This bit was a crawl over broken glass,'' says Oswalt. Still, he recognizes the dangers of Comic losing its main source of conflict. ''You wouldn't watch a comedy called 'The Even Couple,''' he says. ''`Let's order pizza.' `You read my mind!'''

15:48 The comics fight for immunity by entertaining kids. ''This is anticomedy!'' roars Oswalt. ''Why do [producers] think comedians want to look like desperate, dancing monkeys?''

38:09 The camera pans over the just-happy-to-be-on-TV voting audience. Oswalt scoffs, ''Okay, drunk tourists -- let's decide the future of comedy!''

50:04 Oswalt correctly predicts that telegenic Gary Gulman will beat troll-like Jay London. ''From a looking-for-a-sitcom-star point of view,'' he says, ''it's like Gary pulled a sword out of the stone before the show even started.''

Originally posted Jul 30, 2004 Published in issue #776 Jul 30, 2004 Order article reprints
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