Comedian performs gentle, weird stand-up on late night; kills

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon
Joe Pera Stand-Up Performance

When a stand-up is coming up, they work toward getting a "tight five," referring to five minutes of killer material that's ready for a late-night set. Joe Pera is not a "tight five" sort of comedian. Gentle and peculiar, Pera performs at a pace much slower than you'll normally see on TV. (So slow and calm, he made a usable sleep-aid video for Adult Swim.) But what's so great about his performance last night is that Pera didn't alter his style for television, he made the audience adjust to him.

I've seen Pera perform a bunch of times in New York, so I knew what to expect. What's so impressive here is that Pera is able to convey his persona so succinctly to the audience that by the time he says – talking as a person talking to him – "a cool guy like you," the audience laughs louder than they had before. My favorite detail is his hands: He spends almost the entire set nervously almost putting them in his pocket — it's a clever way to create pre-punch-line tension.

And that a cappella joke! Late-night audiences tend to not be the best for comedians they aren't familiar with. If you watch any comedian's late-night set, regardless of the show, you'll hear some medium laughs and a lot of (likely cued) applause breaks. Toward the end, Pera gets both the loud pop laughs and the sort between-joke rolling laughter you'd see at a real comedy show. And the laughs are truly deserved.

RELATED: See photos of Seth Myers through the years:

Seth Myers
See Gallery
Comedian performs gentle, weird stand-up on late night; kills
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 07: Seth Myers attends Cool Comedy - Hot Cuisine for Scleroderma Research Foundation hosted by Bob Saget at Carolines On Broadway on November 7, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Mark Von Holden/WireImage for Scleroderma Research Foundation)
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 29: Comedian Seth Myers (L) and actor Jon Hamm attend the New Yorker White House Correspondents' dinner pre-party at The W Hotel, rooftop on April 29, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for The New Yorker)
(KG) DNC26POKER -- Saturday NIght Live comedian Seth Myers checked out the results of a digital photograph made at the Tuesday night poker tournament at Coors Field, a charity event for paralyzed veterans.. Karl Gehring/The Denver Post (Photo By Karl Gehring/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- Episode 1548 -- Airdate 03/07/2009 -- Pictured: (l-r) Justin Timberlake, Seth Myers (Photo by Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 07: Actor Seth Myers attends Fashion's Night Out: The Show at Lincoln Center on September 7, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Gary Gershoff/WireImage)

Read Full Story

People are Reading