Monday, April 28, 2014

Jim Gaffigan's "Obsessed"




“All he talks about is food.”

That’s a direct quote from a friend. She had asked me to suggest a few comedians to her and, after inquiring what she thought about the CD I recommended, that was the reason I was given for her not approving.

“All he talks about is food.”

My friend has no idea how badly I wanted to throw a hammer at her head. 

Yes, Jim Gaffigan talks about food a lot, both in the past and on his new album, “Obsessed.” He’s also funny as hell when he does it. As far as I’m concerned, if you make me laugh as hard - and as consistently - as Gaffigan does, you can talk about whatever you want. You can talk about a crack in the ground for four hours straight, if what you’re saying is funny, who cares? If you make me laugh, full-on belly laugh, how can I complain? George Carlin talked a lot about wordplay, Lewis Black talks a lot about politics, and Chris Rock talks a lot about race; they all have their “thing” but that doesn’t make them un-funny for returning to subjects that really click with them. “All he talks about is food” is an observation, not a reason that someone is or isn’t funny.

OK, Ed….breathe…

As you can probably tell from my mini-rant (And the way I reacted as if Gaffigan is a close personal friend of mine), I loved this new album and if ever you’ve laughed at anything Gaffigan has said or done, you’re in for another hour of classic Gaffigonian humor.

The reason, of course, that Gaffigan’s foodie humor works so well is because it’s true. Kobe beef and it’s oddball ritual of getting a cow drunk before giving it a massage is questionable. Chicken and waffles is pretty much gluttony at its apex (the same goes for biscuits and gravy) and we really are eating bugs of the sea - and charging a lot of money to do so.

Of course, just like every other Gaffigan project, he doesn’t talk only about food (it just seems that way because a lot of his food-related material has really taken hold and skyrocketed) and his bits on his family (you don’t have to tell him five kids is a lot) and Mt. Rushmore (yes, it’s still a “thing”) are just as solid. 

Gaffigan has always had a knack for pointing out the absurdity in everyday conventions the rest of us have accepted without question. Like he did in the past with holidays, this time around he puts the marriage ceremony ritual under the microscope, pointing out one incredible “what the heck” detail after another.

As a testament to Gaffigan’s comedy he has a bit on Cancer that is flat-out hilarious. I know how that sounds, but don’t let it put you off. How you make cancer funny without it ever being in poor taste or controversial is beyond me, but obviously he figured out how to do it.

Yes, Jim Gaffigan talks a lot about food. And yes, I laughed. A lot. So what’s the problem?


No comments:

Post a Comment