By Milas Bowman and Stella Dennig
Bucket List Destination of the Week: Naked Comedy with ImprovBoston ($10); 40 Prospect St. (Central Square); Cambridge, MA
Goal: See more penises in one night than ever before.
Successful? Not even close. We both do wilderness.
Penis Tally: 11: 8 comedians, 2 audience volunteers, and 1 fire safety advocate
You know you’re in for a night of unexpected comedy when the first words out of the MC’s mouth are, “Few comedians do dick jokes with their dicks out.” (Did we mention we could see his penis?) So lest you think that all of our adventures will involve vogue establishments, choice whiskey, and, frankly, people wearing clothes, this exploit may distort that impression. We consulted our favorite blog, Cheap Thrills Boston, for inspiration and decided to explore ImprovBoston, a nonprofit comedy theater and school in Central Square. Though Wednesday may be our weekly movie night, we agreed to delay our screening of The Fly to enjoy two of our favorite things: laughter and nudity in one great night of Naked Comedy.
This particular event at ImprovBoston began with a one-time nude comedic stunt by Andy Ofiesh, after which he was overwhelmed by viewer demand for his extraordinarily average, middle-aged body. Thus emerged the monthly showcase of naked stand-up comics, known as Naked Comedy.
It is unclear whether there were more dick jokes than in a typical stand-up routine, but we did determine that self-deprecating humor is noticeably more uncomfortable when the comic is naked. Once those feelings subsided, we found the comedians’ comfort with their bodies refreshing (we cannot say anyone has ever spoken frankly to us about psoriasis while undressed before). Our visit happened to consist of entirely male comics, though gender does vary show by show.
While comedians may rotate, a few acts never change; Naked Comedy always features one comic prepared to lose his “nude-ginity” and, during a brief intermission, audience members are encouraged to strip down and share jokes on stage. Some of the acts fell flat, but thankfully the show went on at a lively pace. Each comic performs for only a few minutes, so there is little chance of growing bored—unless penis parades amuse you less than they do us, of course. For the girl in the front row who found herself uncomfortably close to the last comedian’s penis, the latter may have been true.
While we admit that Naked Comedy may not be for everyone, we say: go for it! If naked yoga and bottles of baby oil (we will not go into any more detail here) intrigue or (dare we say) arouse you, Naked Comedy will make you laugh and feel at home with the rest of the audience (read: other perverts).
Our favorite moments of the night:
1. Seeing the first naked comic run on stage. We assumed Naked Comedy could be taken literally but couldn’t be sure until we saw it with our very own eyes.
2. Naked headstands performed by the MC.
3. It may have been the worst joke of the night, but it got us (OK, mostly Stella): “What’s brown and sticky?” (“A Stick!”)
4. When the final comedian lowered the mic stand to below his waistline, used it as a stand for something else, and then asked, “Does anyone want to talk into the mic?”