My standing joke as I get older is that it’s alright if I drink too much because I was born with a second liver. Although Sam Kissajukian is much younger and more handsome, he has created a reason to drink more alcohol.
The premise of his one hour set is that he has 50 jokes to deliver and with every failed joke he has to down a shot of vodka.
He cleverly engages the audience with some banter in the first five minutes – putting them at ease and highlighting the ground rules of his show.
“Big John”, sitting at the front, is designated as the adjudicator of what falls flat and what doesn’t. It’s an important role because Sam will either get blind drunk and spiral into a stand up coma fail or deliver some great stories and one- liners that will keep the audience in raptures.
It’s a compelling and interesting social experiment and the audience is in on it from the get go.
Luckily for him, the drunker he gets, the better he gets. His comic timing and joke telling improves as he sips on the two champagne glasses of vodka perched precariously on the table in front of the stage.
He loses his inhibitions and what nervousness he had (if he had any to begin with – such is his confident stagger onto the stage) and flies into his best set of jokes. More edgy and plenty of sexual deviance style humour, which the young sell out audience laps up.
Perhaps he should have done the sex and girlfriend jokes a bit earlier so he didn’t have to down another shot of vodka – one could ask is he funnier because he is drunk or because he has saved his best jokes till last?
This is comedy working at all sorts of social and cultural levels – mirroring the culture of Aussies who drink too much in public and then become inappropriate but paradoxically hilarious.
No doubt people laughed, but a few didn’t see the point either. However, the audience were the guinea pigs of an experiment that ultimately worked.