Sunday, May 20, 2007
Jon Stewart (The SOB Review) - Orpheum Theatre, Minneapolis, MN
***1/2 (out of ****)
He may be America's premier purveyor of "fake" news, but comedian Jon Stewart and his uniformly funny stand-up routine are 100% genuine and clearly from the heart.
And surprise! Without accompaniment of written notes that have almost become de rigueur for many comedians, Stewart delivers an authentic 95-minute performance that transforms him from Comedy Central's top commodity into a satirist with incredible humanity and compassion. In essence, he becomes a de facto "Every Man" for our 21st Century.
Sure, he warms up by serving tasty punchlines his television audience has already heard, including observations on last week's GOP presidential debates and the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. But once he really gets going, he proffers surprising insights on everything from global warming to gay rights to God's "chosen people." He even shares his common sense solutions for preventing further Columbines.
While "The Daily Show" certainly provides Stewart with a prized bully pulpit, he wisely uses his stage performance to burnish his growing reputation as America's most articulate, thoughtful and stimulating humorist since the days of Will Rogers. With a certifiably hopeful eye on the future, Stewart's routine made me stand up... and cheer.
This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).