I've attended a couple of shows at the Spokane Comedy Club, once to see Dan Cummins and again this past February to see Margaret Cho. Both shows were hits and were reflective both of the talents of the respective comics and of how well Spokane audiences responded to the performers.
So, when I received an email announcing that a Comedians Doing Comedy (Virtual Show) was going to be presented through Zoom on Saturday night, I was willing to give the event a chance. After all, because of the COVID-19 quarantine, it wasn't possible to see the show in person. And the Zoom cost was just $10.
That's how at 7 p.m. on Saturday, I watched a slate of seven comics do short stints — 10-12 minutes — of standup. And the result was a mix. On one hand, the sound wasn't always the best. At times during Cummins' routine, I couldn't even hear him. This is a situation that likely will improve as the comics get more accustomed to performing online.
On the other, the comedy — which always seems to happen — was uneven. For me, Kelsey Cook — who just happens to have Spokane-area ties — was the funniest performer. Followed closely by Ryan Niemiller, the one-time third-place finisher at America's Got Talent. Cummins, who also has local ties and whom I normally love, got lost in one of his stories — leading him to admit that he hadn't prepared well enough.
That's how things go, though. And it won't stop me from paying for future Virtual Shows. On May 1, Cook will perform with Pete Lee. Then on May 2, the lineup of six comics will include those who have performed on "The Tonight Show" (Andy Woodhull) and on "Conan" (John Roy).
Everyone needs a good laugh, especially these days. There should be a few good ones in both of those.
Especially when Cook is onstage.