Festival Supreme: Eight hours of comedy, music, and pure entertainment


Photo by Malissa Myers/ El Paisano

Mac Demarco and his band played their set at this year's Festival Supreme in full MacGruber costumes, complete with blond mullets.

Malissa Myers, Editor- in- Chief, Digital

The 4th annual Festival Supreme took place October 29th at The Shrine Expo Hall in Los Angeles, with headliners Flight of the Conchords and Weird Al Yankovic, amongst many others. Jack Black and Kyle Gass, of the comedy duo Tenacious D, curate the huge comedy and music fest every year around Halloween time. Festival Supreme continues to draw in costume-clad crowds annually, and this year’s fest did not disappoint fans.

Festival Supreme always has a different theme, and this year’s was “The Final Frontier”, a nod to everything otherworldly. Being that it took place on Halloween weekend, attendees were eager to dress up and show off their creativity. Costumes ranged from Star Wars’ tauntauns to an extraterrestrial Elvis Presley, to “Barf” from Spaceballs. It’s no surprise that comedy fans have the best costumes.

Three stages were set up throughout The Shrine, all with fitting names. Inside were the Space Disco and Crab Nebula stages, and the largest, the Omega stage, was outdoors. The Space Disco stage hosted DJs such as Tenacious DJ and IHEARTCOMIX, which got the crowd dancing.

The Crab Nebula stage entertained a packed auditorium throughout the night with fan favorites such as Will Forte, Sarah Silverman, and Patton Oswalt. But the biggest stage, Omega, hosted the biggest names and all of the musical acts of the night.

Comedian Eric Andre hit the Omega stage early in the evening to host a live version of his T.V. show. His sidekick Hannibal Buress was not with him unfortunately, but recurring character Kraft Punk made an appearance, along with his guest David Arquette. The Eric Andre show is hilarious, and often shocking (he literally shocked Arquette with a dog collar,) and it was great to see it performed live.

Eighties punk band The Vandals had a set on the Omega stage, which brought back some nostalgia for many fans. Indie rocker Mac DeMarco performed with his band, who were all dressed in costume as the SNL character MacGruber.

My favorite musical performance of the night was Test Pattern, a Talking Heads parody band made up of SNL stars Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, and Maya Rudolph. Test Pattern is funny, but it’s also actually a good band with impressive vocals by Rudolph.

One of the final performances was Weird Al Yankovic. It was surreal to see him perform 80’s parodies “Just Eat It” and “Like a Surgeon” in his famous M.J.- inspired fat suit. Seriously took me back to my childhood. Weird Al is a true pop cultural icon, and he still puts on a great performance.

Closing out the fest were New Zealand comedy Flight of the Conchords, whom I’ve been wanting to see live for 10 years now. They were everything I was hoping they’d be; their chemistry on stage was sweet and funny. When they sang “Bowie” I shed a few tears, and it was a perfect end to such a great night.

Other than the 23 acts the stages had to offer, there was a “Chill Zone” outdoors, complete with a retro arcade, space-themed rides, and a giant slide. There was also a Bowie face painting booth, with a huge line of people eager to honor the late icon by getting their faces painted like Ziggy Stardust.

There were also food trucks outdoors, as well as full bars throughout the venue for the 21 and over crowd. One my favorite traveling food vendors, “Spicy Pie” pizza, was in attendance. “Spicy Pie” is only available at various festivals and events, and it’s so delicious that it’s worth listing as one of the highlights of my Festival Supreme experience.

This was my third time attending Festival Supreme and it always feels more like a huge, happy costume party rather than a fest. I have strayed away from other festivals recently, for many anxiety-driven reasons, but I have been consistently impressed with how smoothly the entirety of Festival Supreme seems to be orchestrated.

L.A. Weekly has dubbed Festival Supreme as “The Coachella of Comedy.” A great description in regards to the quality and variety of entertainment, but I’d like to dispel any negative connotations that go along with the comparison.

At Festival Supreme you can always get a cold beer without waiting an hour and missing one of your favorite acts. You can travel from stage to stage without expending all of your energy, and still getting a good viewing spot. And one possibly underrated element of Festival Supreme is that there are plenty of bathrooms inside the Shrine! No porta-potties!

Festival Supreme is eight hours of fun, comedy, music, food, and pure entertainment. If Tenacious D keeps putting out a great lineup every year, I will keep returning. Whenever I discuss Festival Supreme with people who have never heard of it, I always list it as one of the ‘Top Five Most Fun Things I’ve Ever Done in My Life.’ I can honestly say it is worth every penny of the $99.50 ticket price. In my opinion, all other festivals should strive to be a Festival Supreme.