A Night at The Comedy Store

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Michael Khuraibet/El Paisano News

Michael Khuraibet, Digital Editor-in-Chief

At 8433 West Sunset Boulevard, on the world-famous Sunset Strip in the city of West Hollywood, California, lies hallowed ground in the world of stand-up comedy. There, you’ll find The Comedy Store, where since its founding 1972, has been a staple for anyone who follows the comedy circuit.

What started as a “workout room” for comedian Sammy Shore whenever he wasn’t on the road performing, ending up going to his wife Mitzi in their divorce. Since she took it over, the club has become a Mecca for anyone hoping to make it big making people laugh.

Comedy’s Elite

The Store, as it’s known, has hosted comedians of all calibers. From household names like Richard Pryor and George Carlin, to up-and-comers and old-timers, to comedy pariahs, there is bound to be an act to appeal to everyone in one of its three halls; the Original Room, the Main Room, and the Belly Room.

In both the Original and Main Rooms, there is a typical lineup of comedians performing their well-rehearsed routines; in the Belly Room, however, audiences will be treated to more eclectic performances, such as comedians workshopping new material, to more physical comedians.

Every night of the week, shows takes place, with any number of comics doing anywhere from 10 minutes, up to their hour-long specials. The amount of performers some nights can be physically exhausting for audience members, due to the sheer energy on stage.

The Best of The Store

On Wednesday, February 7th, in the Main Room at The Store, I attended an event called “The Best of The Store,” featuring some of the hottest comedians headlining a series of more than a dozen total performers. 

Performances began at 8:30pm, with 15 minute sets until 11:45pm.

To protect the intellectual property of the performers (and presumably to prevent distractions), The Store does not allow photography, audio, or video recording of any kind.

Joe Rogan and Marc Maron, known for their immensely successful podcasts, performed material covering a wide range of topics, from topical issues of politics, race, and gender, to general observations and audience interaction.

Maron and Ron White, famous for his participation in the Blue Collar Comedy Tour, told stories about their own life experiences, with Maron also being famous for his particularly introspective style.

Anthony Jeselnik, the outlier of the foursome, performs a unique brand of comedy, consisting mainly of edgy one-liners and roasts; his style may not appeal to everyone, but it suits his character very well. He also tested new material, which the crowd was more than happy to oblige.

The Main Room crowd was electric, with comics taking full advantage, even when telling jokes some may find to be in bad taste. The atmosphere (and perhaps the infamous two-drink minimum) made the event spectacular, with audience members sitting opposite each other, sharing memories of their favorite comedians before the show began. At the end, everyone walked out with a spring in their step, and, as I did, a sincere desire to go to bed; not, however, until after repeating the jokes they just heard in the car on the way home.