Live Nation sent me a pair of complimentary tickets for Dylan Brody’s show at Punch Line Comedy in San Francisco last Tuesday, so the Boyfriend and I went. We’d never been to the Punch Line or heard of Dylan Brody before. The venue was smaller than we expected, with probably one-third the capacity of Cobb’s Comedy Club, and the stage had a pretty backdrop depicting the San Francisco skyline. The Boyfriend liked the intimacy of the space. I disliked the hardness of the wooden chairs.
Dylan Brody turned out to be a scholarly, nervous Jew with grammatically pedantic tendencies (which I approved of) and an erudite and sometimes awkward sense of humor. Many of his jokes were amusing but not laugh-out-loud funny, and I think that some of his material might have gone over people’s heads. His show consisted of a chronological but rambling narrative of his life punctuated by the occasional tangent. He told stories about being the stereotypically nerdy Jew in a small gentile town, studying theater in London, moving to Los Angeles after college to pursue an acting/movie/writing career, meeting his wife, and, after marrying her, taking up kung fu to battle clinical depression. Many of his jokes were inspired by his stern, very Asian, and linguistically challenged kung fu teacher (who he did a hilarious job of impersonating) and the bumbling wisdom he always seemed to impart. My favorite joke involved his impersonation of the kung fu teacher’s dramatic sadness over the death of a cat he claimed not to like. I enjoyed all of Brody’s stories, but I think his artfully awkward elocution would have been more appropriate for a college lecture hall than a comedy club.