Our dirt bikes bring all the boys to the yard. Damn right, they're better than yours.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Saved by the Buoyancy of Citrus

That’s a line from a bit by late comedian Mitch Hedberg, who OD’d last year in a New Jersey hotel room. Like Belushi and Farley before him, he self-medicated, but unlike those guys, he never made it big before clocking out. Apparently this is because his scatter-shot style of non-sequitur one-liners didn’t lend itself well to sit-coms or movies (although he did appear in Almost Famous and Lords of Dogtown). If he’d stuck around he might have been called the next Steven Wright, although that’s not actually very accurate. Hedberg’s style is completely unique; his delivery was more stoner than deadpan, his observations were more unexpected in their pay-offs than Wright’s, and his the success of his gags rested much more on the inflections he used in their delivery. The way he uneasily shuffled around stage, eyes closed behind retro bangs and tinted shades, mades it seem like he’d gonna break into hysteria at any moment. He wasn’t one of those guys you’d look at and say, “Whaaa? Drugs? Him? Nooooo… .”

Anyhow, long story short: he’s one of the funniest live performers you’ve never heard of. I’m not a big stand-up junkie or anything, but this week I was given a DVD of Just for Laughs: Stand Up, Vol. 2 - On the Edge, which features a bunch of comedians, including The Daily Show’s Angry Man Lewis Black, Just for Laughs Mascot Harlan Williams and, of course, Hedberg – and Hedberg won me over from the first joke. I spent a good chunk of this evening watching him on YouTube. He released two albums, and aside from the bits on the Edge DVD, I don’t think there are any other of his performances released. Click here for more on limes-as-life-preservers and a bunch of other off-the wall, hard drug-fuelled weirdness.


Blogger Alana said...

It's true. This guy brings the funny.

1:43 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

was Hedberg 33 years old also?

7:56 PM


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