FunnyMen vs. FunnyWomen? The answer is Transparent

FunnyMen vs. FunnyWomen? The answer is Transparent

I’m feeling unloved, defensive and more than a little bitter. With the ubiquitous Amy Schumer suddenly synonymous with comedy, it’s obvious that the road of the male comedian has become a lot more perilous. Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Kate McKinnon, Melissa McCarthy, Mindy Kaling… The list of A List Comedy Powerhouses is so long it’s boring, and there’s not a male in the bunch. Even Judd Apatow is only relevant because his last movie was a collaboration with Amy Schumer. There are plenty of solid funnymen out there, of course, but there just isn’t the same…excitement. The truly great male standups like Bill Burr – and even the brave and brilliant Louis CK – are all overshadowed by the Amy’s (remember when Amy Schumer was the “female Anthony Jeselnik”? AJ is now hosting “Last Comic Standing” and is less well known than JB Smoove). In film, Steve Carrell and Will Ferrell are poised to accomplish what Jim Carrey only dreamed of – spend their sunset years in highly regarded dramas. On stage and in movies, Kevin Hart’s on a winning streak but let’s be honest, he’s the black Dane Cook; he works so hard to be funny you wish he’d take a laxative. On TV, Dave Letterman and Jon Stewart have retired. And while John Oliver and Larry Wilmore are solid, they’re carrying the torch, not lighting anyone’s fire. The closest we have to a king of comedy right now is the great dramatic actor Jon Hamm, and if his performance in “Minions” is any indication, his funny juice dried up when he stopped serving as a...
Comic Strip Live!

Comic Strip Live!

Come see me in the Main Show Tuesday May 19! Since it’s NYC, and in honor of the Mad Men finale, I’m going back to my roots in the ad biz, sharing the Millennial Master Plan and the challenges of breathing life into a middle-aged brand… Be sure to tell them you’re here to see Hersh! Reservations Suggested $15 Cover (Cash only) No groupons, win-a-parties or other passes for this very special...
Gen X-bred. Millennial-approved.

Gen X-bred. Millennial-approved.

There’s a lot of frustration out there on the part of old people. I don’t blame them. They’re nearly 40, and irrelevant. What these sad sacks need to understand is that it’s their own fault. In the 90s, they were bouncing along the edges of the dot com bubble, thinking they were the next “me” generation, instead of what they were: chum for the Wi generation. If this sounds harsh, it’s because I told you so. I saw this coming. I knew nothing was going to stop me from aging. I was bound to turn 40 in the late aughts. But I could prepare. Money wasn’t the answer; I knew I’d lose that in the recession. The solution was simple: artificial intelligence. Well, not artificial per se. More, an extension of my own brain. The science isn’t as complicated as it sounds, and I’ll come out with it: in my early 20s, instead of climbing the ladder of success, I started having kids, and I didn’t stop — until I knew I’d won. The biggest problem old folks face is that Millennials don’t take them seriously. Why should they? Boomers, Gen X-ers and the literally deceased have always been grownups, and the one old rule that these youngsters do adhere to is never to trust anyone over 30. I didn’t turn 30 until after my Millennials were spawned, and as a result, I’m one of them. I grew up with them. Sure, there was an age difference, but we went through a lot together. A move from NY to LA, a divorce (mine), a move back to the east...
Des Moines Funny Bone

Des Moines Funny Bone

I’ll be guesting Friday night, in support of headliner Ralph Harris (The Tonight Show Starring Jay Leno and Late Night with Conan O’Brien). Two shows, 7:30pm and 9:45pm!
Laughter Party: How I Became a Spirit Ambassador

Laughter Party: How I Became a Spirit Ambassador

I didn’t really drink until my 30s, which is when I became a businessman, a successful Public Relations exec with my own firm in a niche business, traveling the world and doing a lot of client dinners. It was also when I found my brothers – the group of guys with whom I’d share countless (mis)adventures – and though we weren’t all in the same industry, we rolled together, even forming a small marketing firm as a means of underwriting our excursions. The two things no trip was without? Liquor and comedy. We bought the former, I provided the latter. A decade or so into this journey, I decided to go pro as a standup comedian. My drinking suffered; the more you talk, the less you consume. But my love of libations remained a huge part of my act. While touring the Midwest in 2014, I befriended Keith Kerkhoff, founder of Templeton Rye and grandson of the Prohibition-era formula’s originator, Alphonse Kerkhoff (who distilled what Al Capone branded “The Good Stuff”). We filmed some fun stuff together while shooting material for The Tiny Sirko Show, and with its uncommonly smooth finish (I’m an unpaid endorser, so there!), Templeton Rye on the rocks became my new go-to drink. The distilled karma must have drifted east, because I next got a call from Randy McKinley, who runs Manatawny Still Works in Pottstown, PA, inviting me to do a corporate event at his place. Given Randy’s imagination and ambition, it would be more than a corporate gig: it would be a comedy concert, free to the public, heavily promoted and filmed for...