Tuesday, January 4, 2011

POPped Review: 'Hollywood Babble-On' live at The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club

'Hollywood Babble-On' is a lewd and crude look into entertainments top stories. And it's one of the best nights out you will ever have.  In it's tourist-centric location at Universal Studios CityWalk, The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club is a perfect location for the show.  How many times have tourists, coming to L.A. for the first time, been silly enough to ask someone, "Where can I see me some stars?"  Usually the answer is, " 'Promises' in Malibu," or, "The Betty Ford Center."  Well, the answer everyone should now use is, "Every Friday night at The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club!"    

In 2010, Director Kevin Smith (Clerks, Dogma, Cop Out, Red State) expanded from his one podcast, Smodcast, that was already a hit on iTunes. And he did it in a very creative way.  Not only did he begin more podcasts, he actually purchased a small theater in Los Angeles to start recording some of them in front of an audience.  The Smodcastle was now born.  With over nine podcasts in his Smodcast network, there was one that had a total different vibe. That was 'Hollywood Babble-On', with co-host Ralph Garman (KROQ's Kevin and Bean Show, Sharktopus, NYPD Blue).       

With the audience growing, and wishing to drink along with Ralph, the show moved from the Smodcastle to The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club.  In here the audience can play the 'Hollywood Babble-On' drinking game that has been created by their listeners.  But the show is more than a podcast, and more than a drinking game.  It's two people that enjoy all things pop culture and want to talk about it in a room full of friends.  And that's exactly what it feels like there, and that is exactly what they do.  They talk about the entertainment news of the week.  They (especially Ralph) are not afraid to voice their true opinions about certain things, and certain people.  (We're looking at you Chelsea Handler.)  

While the podcast is very funny to listen to, there is something more about attending in person.  Watching Ralph and Kevin is like watching Abbot and Costello in their prime.  The looks they give each other, Ralph's physicality during impersonations, and the way they feed off of each other (and the audience) is so much fun to watch.  While some may not think about it, they really are a comedy team.  They make it seem effortless as the riff on stories. You get the sense while watching the show that there is nothing else they would rather be doing.  Even in the club atmosphere of drinks and food being ordered, the audience hangs on their every word.  That in itself is a feat, but the audience does not go away let down.  

Normally their show is around 90 minutes, however at their New Years Eve show they went on for 3 hours.  That is a long time to try and keep a venue full of drunkards entertained.  But they managed it, and for myself, it did not feel anywhere near that length of time.  How do they do it?  By making the audience know that they are as much a part of the show as the hosts.  That comes from talking to them directly, reading their emails, and now bringing them on stage to win prizes from Kevin's closet.  The prizes being free items that Kevin has collected but never opened.  From shirts from his movies, to every season of The Cosby Show on DVD.  They even chose that night to crown a newlywed couple as a....well, you'll have to listen to their podcast and ours to find out.  But my wife and I were very surprised.  (Full disclosure: My wife and I were crowned by Ralph and Kevin, but that in no way had an influence on this review.  But having sex with them, that totally influenced this re....wait, what?)

I can not say enough great things about going to see 'Hollywood Babble-On' live. If you are a fan of entertainment, looking for something new to experience and do not have sensitive ears, you need to go.  Who knows, you could win something from Kevin's closet.  

Tickets for 'Hollywood Babble-On' are $20 (with a $7 deal for valet parking).  They can be purchased online at www.babbleonralph.com or www.babbleonkev.com. Here you can also stream the podcast, or you can subscribe on iTunes for free.  

For more information on upcoming dates, you can also visit the venues site ww.thejonlovitzcomedyclub.com.

Be sure to visit www.smodcastle.com to find out about all of the other live podcasts in the Smodcast network.

POPped with a crown and sash
Jungle Jesse

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