Friday, February 3, 2012
Women ARE Funny...As Shit!
I have heard it said, far too many times, that women aren't funny, or female comedians tend not to be authentic. I couldn't disagree more. I see hilarious female comics all the time. Let me tell you about two of America's hottest comics--in more ways then one!
Bobbie Oliver is one of the most commanding presences on stage I've ever seen. From the moment she walks on stage, she OWNS it. Her material is always sharp and funny, but most importantly, it comes from a deep, personal and real place. Bobbie is unafraid to share any thought, feeling or insecurity she has with her audience.
Growing up dirt poor in a trailer park in Georgia provides Bobbie with a rich well of material. Her account of growing up with seven people in a two-bedroom, one-bathroom trailer is hilarious. "When my brother went to prison, he wrote me a letter and said 'Dear Bobbie, this place is a palace! They only got two guys to a room. They eat three times a day. I want to stay here forever!'" "Everyone in my family thinks there is a family curse," she says. "I'm like, y'all, we're not the Kennedys. We just make really bad decisions."
The racist tendencies in her family also offer many opportunities for Bobbie to be painfully honest. When her sister complains about "the Orientals," Bobbie says "I thought she was being attacked by a rug." When her brother brags that "We don't got no colored people on my street," Bobbie corrects him: "It's we don't have any colored people on my street. He's SO ignorant!" Addiction is also a recurring theme in her family. Even her aunt was arrested, because "she was on 22 prescriptions at one time, all of which she had written herself, because she stole her doctor's pad. The pharmacist got suspicious when the prescriptions just started saying 'downers.' Or 'something to take the edge off.'"
When Bobbie's sister became incapable of taking care of her kids, they ended up in Bobbie's care. "Oh, she's not dead or anything," she explains. "She's just a loser." Raising two teenagers provided Bobbie with another source of material. "When you have teenagers you have to talk about drugs...One day, they sat me down and said 'Bobbie, you're too old to smoke pot.'"
Of course, Bobbie's own battles with depression and addiction are also a frequent topic in her comedy. "You know why I'm not addicted to crack?" she asks. "Because I've never tried crack!" On her lifelong depression, she says "I've always hated myself. When I was a baby, they caught me in my crib trying to cut my wrists with a pacifier. My first words were 'I can't take it any more.'" Bobbie recalls the time she spent in a mental hospital for alcoholism and depression in the eleventh grade as the happiest part of her high school experience. "I was very popular in the mental institution. I was voted Most Likely to Succeed...in suicide attempts."
And she doesn't stop there. She has a great bit about her own sexual frustration, as her libido outstretches that of her husband. She complains about her husband, who has established "sex rules" ("Because evidently, I'm a pest."): "We can only have sex once a day. So because I got breakfast, I don't get dinner."
Bobbie just released her first album, Finally!, an hour of non-stop powerhouse comedy. You can download it from her website for free (or for a $5 donation).
Another favorite comic of mine is Sally Mullins. Sally is so comfortable on stage, you forget you're even watching a show. She just seems like she's doing what she would be doing anyway, she just happens to be standing on a stage with a microphone doing it. And like Bobbie, Sally is brutally honest. She talks about aging (and shopping at her favorite store, Forever 38). "No work done here," she says. "I tell guys 'This is me. Accept me as I am or pay for me to look different.'"
Sally is particularly funny when she gets on the subject of sex. On internet sex, she complains that "Guys don't even want to talk to you online until you send them a picture. I just want to say 'It's 4:00 am, for what you want I'm fine.'" On dating frustrations, she asks "Don't you hate it when you throw a guy a piece of ass, and he throws it back...unopened?" Another favorite topic is her notoriously bad taste in men. When a guy her friend was seeing turns out to be involved in an amber alert, her only response is "Woah! He has a car?"
Back in the day, jazz pianists would often engage in "cutting contests," competitive performances where they would try to outperform each other. I'd like to propose that any guy who thinks "women aren't funny" try to "cut" Bobbie or Sally and see how far they get. Let's take this to the stage!
Bobbie and Sally are currently playing gigs together as the Cougars of Comedy Tour. It's a night of hilarious and sexy comedy! Bobbie and Sally are raw, hysterical and on the prowl. Lock up your sons!