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Friday, November 25, 2011

Good Comedians, One Terrible Poem, and the Seattle International Comedy Competition

Posted by on Fri, Nov 25, 2011 at 11:49 AM

This year's Seattle International Comedy Competition (SICC) has been a well-documented success, and after a month of shows, SICC is finally gearing up to crown a winner this weekend. You still have two opportunities to see the five finalists perform—at 8:00 pm Saturday night at the Admiral Theater in Bremerton, and at the final show (glory be!) at 8:00 pm Sunday night at the Comedy Underground.

They're all funny, accomplished comedians. In an attempt to convey that without spoiling the best parts of their routines (and also because I'm kind of a cunt) I sent them the first lines of poem on Thanksgiving Day and ordered them to finish it. Here's the poem:

Ruth and Johnny Side by Side
Went Out for an Auto Ride
They Hit a Bump
Ruth Hit a Tree
And John....

Their responses after the jump.

Mrs. Hughes: Died unhappily.

Rodney Sherwood: Fled the scene of the accident. Ruth was his wife’s sister. They were having an affair. To make matters worse, it’s John’s wife’s car. A piece of crap car she got with a high interest loan from those A-Holes at Pierre Money Mart.

Seriously, I wouldn’t be surprised if the odometer had been rolled back.

The seat belt latch was faulty so when they hit the bump, Ruth was ejected from the car and ended up impaled on the tree. There’s no upside here.

Moral of the story: If you’re gonna cheat on your wife with her sister, take the bus.

Rick Kunkler: Blah....Blah.....Blah...Whatever.......Fuck Michele Bachmann.

Patrick Keane: And John smiled mysteriously.
For in this current economy,
He now only had to pay one fee,
For this Year's SICC.

Mike Baldwin, meanwhile, didn't finish the poem—he just sent me a huge photo of his head:

This is poetry in motion.
  • Mike Baldwin
  • Poetry in motion.


Comments (2) RSS

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Rick Kunkler won last night's event at the Vashon Theatre but was loudly booed by the crowd who overwhelmingly favored Mike Baldwin. Kunkler was funny, but Baldwin was much funnier-the crowd wasn't booing kunkler, but the decision. The docile people of vashon seemed ready to riot. The comedy competition judging system should be changed to avoid situations in which a few judges are out of step with the crowd.
Posted by okthathurts on November 25, 2011 at 1:19 PM · Report this
pg13 2
There are plenty of comedy competitions that are just popularity contests--they're basically "bringer shows" where the winner ends up being the person who brought the most people to come see them and cheer the loudest for them...

This competition is different. The judge-based scoring system has, in general, worked out quite well over the past 32 years in determining over the many shows held in each competition who the truly best performer in a given year are...

Yes, there are anomalies like what happened on Vashon, where the judges (who, I should point out, were all hand picked for that show by the venue to be both representative of the audience and knowledgeable about comedy) and parts of the audience don't always agree--but, that doesn't mean that the judges were wrong or that the system needs to be changed.

A few of the judges found reasons to give Rick more points than Mike for his performance on this night--we asked them for their opinions and they gave them to us.

Comedy is extraordinarily subjective--at some level, it's foolish to think that ANY system can pick a "winner"--but, we have to have a system to have a competition...and I think the system this competition uses is as fair and "accurate" as any comedy competition I've ever seen.

(And I think Mike Baldwin would have agreed with me on that on just about every night except Wednesday night in Vashon.)

--Director of Talent (and Official Scorekeeper) for the 32nd Annual Seattle International Comedy Competition

PS--Most shows, the judges and the audience do tend to agree...but, obviously, not always.
Posted by pg13 on November 26, 2011 at 2:27 AM · Report this

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