I recently reviewed comedian Jim Gaffigan’s new stand-up comedy special called Mr. Universe and I have to say from a personal perspective that I found it to be hilarious.
Whether an individual personally cares for Jim’s stand-up comedy or not, I will tell you this – there is a lot that can be learned by other comedians from this master of the stand-up comedy stage.
Let me touch on just a few things that other comedians may want to pay attention to:
Topic based material – below you will find a 9 minute YouTube video of comedian Jim Gaffigan talking about one topic: McDonalds.
My online course for comedians is focused on developing and delivering topic based material for a number of reasons that are illustrated by the stand-up comedy material delivered by Jim Gaffigan as demonstrated in the video below:
1. Once a topic is set-up properly, minimal set-up is needed when expressing oneself about all aspects regarding that topic.
If structured properly, less set-up in stand-up comedy material means more punchlines (provided the material is funny in the first place of course).
Note that the video below represents 9 minutes of material on a single topic. Comedians who work on one joke at a time can literally spend months and months developing enough “jokes” to make up just 5 minutes of material.
2. Just check out the punchline frequency in the video. You need only to count the number of laughs generated each minute to verify for yourself what I am talking about.
Again, another advantage of developing and delivering topic based material.
I should probably mention that over a third of each minute (20+ seconds) in this performance is audience laughter.
3. Also note the topic material itself: McDonalds. Is it cutting edge? Nope. Can virtually everyone relate to, appreciate, visualize what Jim is talking about? Absolutely.
What does that mean? Maximum laughter frequency and intensity because the audience doesn’t have to try to figure out what he’s talking about.
But more importantly, the topic material is appropriate for ANY audience, which provides maximum performance opportunities (and more income for sure).
Another thing I really admire about Jim Gaffigan’s stand-up comedy is that he is able to generate significant and frequent laughter without the usual comments about being a “physical” comedian (which I say throughout this blog that delivery “style” does not matter when it comes to getting big laughs on stage).
Here’s the video: