Why So Serious?

Why So Serious, Lori Callahan?

[caption id="attachment_38919" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Lori Callahan, the "Mom of Denver comedy," will headline a pair of shows at the Comedy Works clubs this week. Photo courtesy of Crystal Allen."][/caption] Denver native Lori Callahan is known around the Mile High City as the "Mom of Denver comedy," and she lives up to the title by fiercely supporting and protecting her cubs.

Why So Serious, Doug Benson?

[caption id="attachment_38777" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="As co-creator of 'The Marijuana-Logues' and former High Times Stoner of the Year, Doug Benson has unquestionable stoner credentials. Photo courtesy of Robyn Von Swank."][/caption] Like a one-man Cheech & Chong, L.A. comic, relentless podcaster and "Best Week Ever" veteran Doug Benson has captured the attention of English-speaking stoners around the globe.

Why So Serious, Seth Meyers?

[caption id="attachment_38518" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="A longtime cast member and head writer at 'Saturday Night Live,' Seth Meyers is now taking his stand-up routine national. Photo courtesy of Mary Ellen Matthews."][/caption] Seth Meyers fills a lot of roles on- and off-screen at "Saturday Night Live," from cast member to head writer to the sole "Weekend Update" anchor.

Why So Serious, Todd Barry?

[caption id="attachment_36216" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="New York comedian Todd Barry will play anywhere, anytime. Well, almost anywhere. Photo by Matthew Rogers."][/caption] Droll New York comedian Todd Barry’s most visible roles have been in friends’ projects, like Darren Aronofsky’s “The Wrestler” (as smug deli manager Wayne), Louis C.K.’s brilliant, eponymous FX show and HBO’s “Flight of the Conchords” — in addition to dozens of late-night talk shows, hip music festivals and Adult Swim cameos.

Why So Serious, Bobcat Goldthwait?

[caption id="attachment_35786" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Remember Bobcat Goldthwait? Not every comedy club-goer does, and that\'s not a bad thing."][/caption] For better or worse, a memorable character follows its creator throughout his or her career, and that's been the case with Bobcat Goldthwait.

Why So Serious, Ben Roy? (UMS edition)

[caption id="attachment_35244" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Comedian and musician Ben Roy relishes putting audiences in uncomfortable situations. Photo courtesy of Crystal Allen."][/caption] Along with a handful of other stand-ups, Ben Roy could make a legitimate claim to being the new face of Denver comedy.

Why So Serious, Dana Gould?

[caption id="attachment_34989" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Dana Gould thinks stand-up comedy is as healthy as it\'s ever been, and he should know."][/caption] Like many stand-ups, Dana Gould is better known for his writing and producing credits and cameo appearances than as a touring comedian -- even if that's the Hopedale, Mass., native's creative bread and butter.

Why So Serious, Jimmy Pardo?

[caption id="attachment_34931" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="As L.A. comedian and Conan O\'Brien favorite Jimmy Pardo knows, podcasts are the savior of many a comedian and the bane of... uh... no one, really."][/caption] Jimmy Pardo is a comedian's comedian -- which is to say he's better known by other stand-ups than he is the general public.

Why So Serious, Arj Barker?

[caption id="attachment_34433" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Big in Australia: \'Flight of the Conchords\' regular Arj Barker, who plays Comedy Works this weekend, is a hit at home and abroad."][/caption] Have you heard the one about the rabbi, the duct tape and your mom's gynecologist?

Why So Serious, Garfunkel and Oates?

[caption id="attachment_34415" align="alignnone" width="609" caption="Are Garfunkel and Oates the next musical-comedy sensation? HBO certainly seems to think so."][/caption] What's that two-headed freak doing in the shadows with your household pet?

Why So Serious, Jim Breuer?

[caption id="attachment_33913" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Former \'SNL\' cast member Jim Breuer\'s party-party days are behind him, but he\'ll still talk about them if you catch him in the right mood."][/caption] Who's that half-lidded creature peering at you through a cloud of white smoke?

Why So Serious, Marc Maron?

[caption id="attachment_33683" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Veteran comedian Marc Maron is finally enjoying some long-awaited, richly-deserved mainstream recognition with his \"WTF with Marc Maron\" podcast, which is approaching its 200th episode since 2009."][/caption] What's that hulking mass galloping at you from the forest?

Why So Serious, Paul F. Tompkins?

[caption id="attachment_32411" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="We hated to break it to him, but we recently informed Paul F. Tompkins that auditions for the Cirque du Soleil adaptation of 'A Clockwork Orange' were over last week.

Why So Serious, Paula Poundstone?

[caption id="attachment_32257" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="When the rapture comes on Saturday, Paula Poundstone will be ready for it. Just no woodland creatures, please."][/caption] For this installment of "Why So Serious?" we talked to veteran comedian Paula Poundstone, a product of the '80s comedy boom who rebounded from an early 2000s scandal to reconnect with her audience via NPR appearances and tireless touring.

Why So Serious, Dan St. Germain?

[caption id="attachment_32092" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="There are many differences between a choco-holic and an alcoholic, and Dan St. Germain is happy to tell you at least a couple of them."][/caption] For this installment of "Why So Serious?" we chatted via e-mail with rising New York comedian Dan St.

Why So Serious, Heather McDonald?

[caption id="attachment_31532" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Heather McDonald\'s impressions and relationship jokes are catnip for fans of Chelsea Handler\'s stand-up and late-night talk show. Photo courtesy of Anderson Group Public Relations."][/caption] For this installment of "Why So Serious," we talked to L.A. stand-up and writer Heather McDonald, a pal of E!

Why So Serious, Kumail Nanjiani?

[caption id="attachment_31211" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Celebrated in comedy circles but unknown to larger audiences, Kumail Nanjiani is finally making his move on the mainstream."][/caption] For this installment of "Why So Serious," we caught up with L.A.'s Kumail Nanjiani, a Pakistan-born comic who was only introduced to stand-up at age 18, but who has managed to snap the comedy world to attention with a blend of refreshing material and an intimidating grasp of stand-up fundamentals.

Why So Serious, Heather Snow?

[caption id="attachment_30894" align="alignnone" width="609" caption="Heather Snow used to draw caricatures at theme parks. Is it any wonder she gravitated toward stand-up after moving to Denver?

Why So Serious, Tom Papa?

[caption id="attachment_30698" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Stand-up comedy can be like sex, and not always in the best of ways, according to \'Marriage Ref\' host Tom Papa."][/caption] For this installment of "Why So Serious," we caught up with comedian, actor and writer Tom Papa, best known as the host of NBC's "The Marriage Ref" and as the opener for mega-comedian Jerry Seinfeld for the last nine years.

Why So Serious, Iliza Shlesinger?

[caption id="attachment_30255" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="\'Last Comic Standing\' champ Iliza Shlesinger has a joke that she can\'t stop telling about pizza and midgets, but you\'ll have to see her live at Comedy Works to hear it."][/caption] For this installment of "Why So Serious," we caught up with Iliza Shlesinger, winner of Season 6 of NBC's "Last Comic Standing." Like Denver favorite Josh Blue, Schlesinger got a significant bump from winning that program -- though she has worked hard to maintain her growing audience, going out of her way to perform multiple times every night of the week.

Why So Serious, Sklar Brothers?

[caption id="attachment_29969" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Comedy duo and identical twins the Sklar Brothers know their sports backwards and forwards. But ballet? Not so much."][/caption] For this installment of "Why So Serious," Reverb contributor Julio Enriquez talked to Randy Sklar of the twin-brother comedy duo The Sklar Brothers about life in the world of tweets, comedy and sports.

Why So Serious, Jim Jefferies?

[caption id="attachment_29701" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Australian comic Jim Jefferies has no problem punching below the belt -- depending on the size of the target."][/caption] Welcome to another "Why So Serious?" -- a column where we ask stand-up comedians a handful of questions, and don't expect anything resembling straight answers.

Why So Serious, Andrew Orvedahl?

[caption id="attachment_29377" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Comedian Andrew Orvedahl is proud -- PROUD, damnit! -- of Denver\'s fertile, aggressive comedy scene."][/caption] Welcome to another "Why So Serious?" -- a column where we ask stand-up comedians a handful of questions, and don't expect anything resembling straight answers.

Why So Serious, David Alan Grier?

[caption id="attachment_28562" align="alignnone" width="610" caption="Former \'In Living Color\' regular and master of impressions David Alan Grier is hitting Comedy Works this weekend."][/caption] Welcome to another "Why So Serious?" -- a column where we ask stand-up comedians a handful of questions, and don't expect anything resembling straight answers.