Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Big Fan 

Wednesday, Aug 25 2010
Comments
Patton Oswalt straddles the mainstream and alt-comedy worlds, which has proven to be an uneasy negotiation. Look no further than his 2008 pissing match with David Cross over whether Cross’s role in the Alvin and the Chipmunks movie undermined his credibility. That’s a pretty ballsy argument for a former cast member of the execrable sitcom The King of Queens to make, but Oswalt came off better in the ensuing cross-blog shit-storm, handling himself with more humility and self-deprecating humor than his fellow alt-comedy titan. Oswalt is able to reconcile these kind of tensions -- such as releasing an album on Sub Pop while lending his voice to Pixar’s Ratatouille -- because his outlook is influenced by any number of comedy traditions. Oswalt’s riffs on marriage, pop culture, politics, music, atheism and KFC Famous Bowls are essentially stylized, hyper-literate takes on traditional observational comedy. As a result, Oswalt wins over both snarky alt-comedy smart-asses and mainstream fans who come to hear the buddy from The King of Queens gripe about marriage. Though Oswalt has had numerous successes both in film and sitcoms, his most recent standup albums, 2009’s My Weakness is Strong and 2007’s Werewolves and Lollipops, have been quiet successes, which have propelled him to a point where he has become nearly as well-known for his sharp standup as for his punch-the-clock side gigs.
Aug. 26-29, 8 p.m.; Aug. 27-28, 10:15 p.m., 2010

About The Author

Paul M. Davis

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed
  1. Most Popular

Slideshows

  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"