The gang is back and season 2 of Undateable is right around the corner. March 17th to be exact. And the cast of stand-ups is down at SXSW kicking off the The Undateable Comedy Tour in support of the show. Hailing from the mind of Bill Lawrence (Scrubs, Spin City, Cougar Town, Clone High) and Adam Sztykiel (Due Date, Made of Honor), Undateable is a comedy series about a group of close-knit friends living in Detroit, helping each other figure out their lives. One of the best parts of this series is that the cast is actually a close-knit group of friends and it shows. Their performance at the festival started off with Lawrence himself coming out on stage to greet the crowd by listing his successful past ventures. But before you get the feeling he’s boasting, he quickly shadows his accomplishment by going into a bit discussing people who lie about being happy when their friends have greater success. Lawrence was referring to Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, his co-creaters of Clone High and the guys behind Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and The Lego Movie. He then played host for the evening bringing out each cast member throughout the night.
Up first was comedian Ron Funches who plays Shelly on the show. The man who currently holds the record for the most wins on @midnight. His set covered Ludachris lyrics, why Santa Claus really gives out presents, explains to the audience why he doesn’t actually vote, and how the “N” word should only be used to shame animals. He really set the tone for what was a fantastic night of comedy. In addition to season 2 of Undateable, Funches has an upcoming role in the new Will Ferrell Kevin Hart film Get Hard which is being featured at this year’s SXSW festival. He’s a can’t miss with a unique presence and delivery that’s undoubtably one of a kind.
Then Rick Glassman, Burski from the show, took to the stage for a set that had the audience in a fit of confusion. Glassman’s set was one of the more interesting ones that we’ve seen in quite sometime. It danced between moments of nervousness and neuroticism to deep honesty and concern. He blurred the lines between the feelings so seamlessly that you couldn’t tell what was real or what was fake. It was so entertaining to see how the crowd were going to deal with the situation being presented to them on the stage. These are the moments that lead to discussions of genius or the very opposite. It felt as if we were sitting in on a therapy session that you weren’t sure was a character driven monologue being performed by an actor or someone reading thoughts that were put to page in a diary. His diary. Glassman’s cliffhanger of a girlfriends dying grandmother and his feelings toward the whole event left the crowd it a daze. The uncomfortableness of the send off resinated to the point where every single person who stepped on stage for the remainder of the evening joked of their concern for Glassman. Performances like that are the ones celebrated for taking the greatest risks. And that’s exactly what he did.
Third to take the stage was the feisty Brent Morin. He plays the role of Justin on the show. Morin had quite the set that contained a little bit of everything with several interruptions on stage by fellow cast member and headliner Chris D’Elia. The back and forth between the two struck an incredible in-the-moment example of how comfortable the two are working together clearly showcasing their chemistry. It gave the room an atmosphere that was less traditional stand-up show and more friends hanging out on stage. It was refreshing and candid. Once Morin was finally back at it solo, he drew the crowd in with his story of losing a girl to a magician. His energy level and confidence shined throughout his performance. Just ask the girl in the front row whom he lost, won back, lost, and then finally triumphed over.
Closing out the show with a strong impromptu set based almost solely on an audience member’s ridiculous hat and job claim of business analyst was comedian, actor, and writer Chris D’Elia. More comfortable than ever, D’Elia worked the stage by absorbing his surroundings, chewing them up, and spitting them out. A show that was far from a “planned” set, and in the moment, all for the better. He weaved the details obtained by his conversation with the man in the hat throughout his set. A killer evening for D’Elia who crushed on the forefront of his latest special, titled Incorrigible, debuting April 17 on Netlfix.
Another fantastic evening in the books at Esther’s Follies here at SXSW Comedy 2015. As for the rest of The Undateable Comedy Tour dates:
3/20 – Las Vegas, NV – House of Blues
3/22 – Detroit, MI – Magic Bag
3/23 – Chicago, IL – The Vic
3/26 – Miami,FL – Ft. Lauderdale Improv
3/27 – Orlando, FL – Hard Rock Live
3/29 – Atlanta, GA – Atlanta Improv
3/30 – Charlotte, NC – Comedy Zone
3/31 – New York City – Carolines on Broadway