Edgy Comedy Hits Center Stage at Pub

Cathereen Lim | Staff Photographer

Cathereen Lim | Staff Photographer
Jackie Kashian entertains the crowd with jokes about herself and her family during Monday Night Comedy at the Anthill Pub.

ASUCI and Southern California-based production company MopTop Lobster presented Monday Night Comedy at the Anthill Pub’s fourth show of the fall quarter this past Monday. Featuring five comedians, jokes ranged from political humor to stories about watching pornography.
Despite a modest setup, which consisted of a stage raised just above floor level, the Anthill Pub was tightly packed, as there was not an empty table to be found.
Ryan Niemiller, who heads MopTop Lobster along with fellow comedian Robbie Pickard, hosted the event. Giving a short set before introducing the first performer, Niemiller’s humor emphasized his handicap of being born with a disability in both of his arms. “Clap … it’s something you can do that I can’t,” Niemiller said with a smirk.
The first performer, Josh Mullins, had a set that was mostly sexual in nature and in part focused on relationships. At one point, Mullins commented on how some people have claimed that he resembles one of the Jonas Brothers, the American boy band known for wearing purity rings. Yet, Mullins also emphasized how he is different from the Jonas Brothers, joking,”I had a purity ring, but I lost it in a vagina.”
Mullins then commented about relationships by dissecting the phrase “I’m a lover, not a fighter.”
“[It means] I’ll still sleep with you ladies, but if we get in trouble, I’m going to run away,” Mullins said.
Robbie Pickard gave a set following Mullins’ work. In his stand-up act, Pickard gave a series of made-up anecdotes including one about his dad having him watch porn as a child to prepare him for sex and saying that if he laughed, he was not ready to take sex seriously. However, in Pickard’s scenario, his dad immediately started cracking up when watching porn as Pickard sat watching stone-faced.
This was not the only case in which porn and Pickard’s father were mentioned in the same breath as he continued to talk about pornography and how curious kids often watch an unknowing parent’s collection. Pickard gave one reason why this was particularly disturbing in his case. “Where that tape ended so did my dad when he was doing his thing,” Pickard said.
Pickard said that in his dad’s case, the FBI disclaimer was still rolling when he played the tape, indicating his father’s lack of stamina.
Mark Serritella followed Pickard as he quickly turned his attention to our current president, George Bush. Serritella remarked on Bush’s hard-line opposition to gay marriage and expressed his doubt in this conviction.
“I guarantee you he would suck a dick if he thought oil was going to shoot out of it,” Serritella said.
Serritella had a heckler in the audience, who he singled out and poked fun at, but ultimately apologized to, telling him, “I just put my ex-girlfriend’s face on your body and started yelling at it.”
Jackie Kashian, who has appeared on “Last Comic Standing” and had her own 30-minute special on Comedy Central, headlined the show. Kashian’s set focused on a variety of topics ranging from stories about her family to her physical appearance.
Kashian jokingly jabbed at her family with descriptions of relatives such as her brothers teased her.
“My brother Russ really likes the movie ‘You’ve Got Mail,’ which is the gayest movie ever. Him and his wife and his two kids. Nice little disguise,” Kashian said.
In talking about her appearance, Kashian commented on the overemphasis on dieting and how unrealistic expectations of women’s looks are.
“I want to be fucked-up skinny. I have a TV that yells at me to be fucked-up skinny, but things get in the way. They’re called meals,” Kashian remarked.
Pickard was pleased with the night’s event and explained his motivation in helping to set up Monday Night Comedy at the Anthill Pub.
“I went to UC Irvine, graduated in 2006 … I wanted to run my own weekly show, and thought that UCI would be a perfect venue, and give them some cool stuff to do on campus for once,” Pickard said.
According to Pickard, his shows have been picking up steam.
“We are getting a lot of regular audience members … The lineup of comedians we bring each week is as good or better than the lineups you will see at The Improv or The Laugh Factory on a weeknight, and this show is for free,” Pickard said.

Monday Night Comedy at the Anthill Pub is held every Monday at 9 p.m. Additional information can be found on the series’ Facebook group, Monday Night Comedy at The Anthill Pub.