This isn’t the first time Comedy Bang Bang has done a live show. Right here at SXSW in 2011 Earwolf brought host Scott Aukerman’s show to the stage. I wasn’t tuned into the awesome of Comedy Bang Bang at the time so I missed the chance to catch that recording. This year I wouldn’t miss out. Host Scott Aukerman (Mr. Show, producer of Between Two Ferns) brought three guests to the stage and included one man band Reggie Watts, who if you ever get a chance to see live, this was my second time after having seen him open for Conan O’Brien on his tour a couple of years back I highly recommend.
The show is pretty much all improv for the uninitiated. The live version didn’t stray far from its usual format though it felt more like a late show since Aukerman came out and had a bit of banter with Reggie before bringing out his first guest. I had no idea who all was to guest on the show which was tough to call being that SXSW had brought all kinds of comedic talent to town both for their films as well as lots of stand up talent for the comedy showcases. The first guest was Tim Heidecker. Heidecker is pretty well-known from his Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! and was in town to promote one of his more serious roles away from the more absurdest take of another film he also stars in this year Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie. Heidecker was wearing a ridiculous hat, and as Aukerman was to tell it was filling in for Nick Offerman who was in no less than four films on the film side of the fest. Heidecker was failing at getting any heat going on his moments before the show began Twitter rumored that Newt Gingrich had died and was laying in state at Stubb’s just down the street. He also indicated that besides being in town for The Comedy he had also there to play music as he had recently joined the band Wilco….
Up next was James Adomian as popular food critic Merrill Shindler. Eating the entire time he was on stage, and having some of it end up in the “splash zone” of the show. It seemed that was it for guests on the show, until Bob Ducca (Seth Morris), who for the uninitiated to the show is Aukerman’s one time step father and suffers from a seemingly never-ending list of aliments joined the group on stage. With Watts’ amazing music talents being available Aukerman lead the guest in a freestyle rap battle. This lead to Ducca mentioning that he had been staying with the governor of Texas at his infamous and bigoted named ranch while being in Texas. Aukerman looked ready to jump out of his skin every time Ducca dropped the name of the ranch, which he did several times.
The show breezed by at a quick hour and was a nice change of pace from the usual day of film and panels that usually front load the early days of SXSW with the Interactive and Film portions of the fest.
You can listen to the show that was recorded in its entirety at Earwolf.com. I’d also recommend checking out some of the other shows at Earwolf as all of them are highly entertaining. It also looks like the live recording followed a bit of the live format of the show as it will appear later this year on IFC. Give ten minutes of the IFC version of the show a watch here.
By John Coovert