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Gallagher Smashes Your Soul Like A Watermelon

By Misnomer on Friday, 15th November 2013 5:00pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 7


Gallagher at Tropicana

I was prepared to write a think piece about an iconic comedian struggling with his own limitations in the harsh face of onetime stardom. I was going to relate my experience seeing Gallagher at the Tropicana. The article would have started with a chronicle of Gallagher's career, the height of which occurred in the 1980's, at which time he was one of the most popular and creative comedians in the country. I would have related how I used to watch his cable specials on betamax tapes, while marveling at how much sense he made of the nonsensical English language, giggling at his silly antics when he jumped on a giant couch, and busting a gut when he smashed a watermelon onto a capacity crowd that couldn't get enough. Then I would have explained how excited I was walking into the Trop, going to see a man Comedy Central named one of the 100 best stand-up comedians of all time.

I would have told you about getting off of the elevator on the Trop's Mezannine and seeing Gallagher standing there, and how I got a little starstruck. There would have been a section where I recalled saying to him, "Oh my gosh, you're you!" And then I would have told you how Gallagher replied, drolly, "Who the fuck did you think I'd be? It's my show." I'd have told you about how Gallagher came out and started his show to an audience of no more than 100 people by eschewing the stage and walking among the tables, shouting to be heard rather than using a microphone. And about how he suggested he was about to go offstage and bring out an opening act, but then never did. And how a large percentage of his act was devoted to matter-of-fact observations about the dumbing down of American society, that, while true, didn't appear to be intended by him to be taken as particularly funny. I would have told you how he time checked at the 44 minute mark, announcing that we'd be getting a one hour show for our $60 admission, and I would have told you how he brought out the famous Sledge-O-Matic hammer for the audience to gaze upon, but never actually picked it up.

I would have written that he concluded his dollar-a-minute, 60-minute show by telling the audience that he'd be outside selling t-shirts so he could get enough money to buy a $60 bag of kush, and how respecting that, I approached him to buy a t-shirt. I'd have told you how he peeled a pre-signed t-shirt from a stack and then argued with me over how I spelled my own name as he scribbled it on the shirt with a Sharpie. Then I would have written that, after handing me my t-shirt, Gallagher said, "Now give me my twenty dollars," before snatching the $20 bill out of my hand and shoving it in his pocket without an ounce of irony. And I probably would have ended the piece by telling you to stay away, far away, from the Gallagher show at the Tropicana.

But in doing research for this article, I discovered that Gallagher has been pulling this crusty curmudgeon routine for quite sometime now. And so, as it turns out, the show isn't so much a comedy act as it is theater of the absurd. Apparently, on any given night, just about anything can happen at this stage of his career. With that in mind, I wholeheartedly endorse Gallagher, appearing nightly at the Tropicana Las Vegas. There's not another show like it in town.

Tagged: gallagher   tropicana   misnomer   


Comments & Discussion:

I like theater of the absurd as much as any body but will pass on the show.

Did he play "Champagne Supernova?"

dude, gallagher is totally a butt.

Yeah, it sounds like all the fun of an Andrea Dworkin reading. I'll pass too. Oddly, I enjoy laughing at comedy shows. This doesn't sound like my kind of night.

Sounds pretty interesting to me.

I had to read this twice just to make sure. At the beging, Mr. Misnomer says "I was prepared to write a think piece...." Does anyone else find that line, suspicious?

^^ I can think. I have thoughts. I don't know, now that you mention it, maybe they're more like impulses.

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