Last Person Watching

Has there ever been a bigger trainwreck to a live reality TV finale show than Wednesday’s conclusion to Last Comic Standing? What happened to this once watchable program? The show hasn’t had any credibility in the comedy world since Dat Phan won the first season, but at least they’ve traditionally had good talent leading up the finals. The first four seasons brought us Rich Vos, Todd Glass, Kathleen Madigan, Alonzo Bodden and Jay London. Even Gary Gulman seemed funny when I first saw him do his I-am-a-gigantic-Jew routine. And at this year’s auditions we got the amazing comedic stylings of Mel Silverback, the world’s first stand up gorilla, whose act was easily the best two minutes of the entire season.

But back to the atrocious season finale of this year’s garbage fest. After eliminating all the good performers in the early rounds (thanks America!) we were left with the funny-when-you-can-understand-him LaVell Crawford, and the not-very-funny-but-certainly-quite-excitable Jon Reep. The two hour I-Can’t-Believe-It’s-Not-Cable schlockfest featured special guest performers Carrot Top, a bunch of puppets, and some guy whose entire act is an impression of John Madden. I couldn’t make that up if I wanted to. This is NBC, the network that gave Jerry Seinfeld a show, and this is the best that they could come up with for guests on their season finale. Carrot Top? Really? Was Sinbad not available? And the guy who did the impression of John Madden… I spend half my week thinking about fantasy football and I don’t even find that guy funny.

Oh and Dane Cook! They had Dane Cook! The internet loves Dane Cook! What does this say about the LCS season finale that it was so grossly unwatchable that I found myself actually thinking “gee Dane Cook is coming up at least he’s a real comic, maybe he’ll be good.” And I hate Dane Cook. But I digress… so when Dane Cook came on, he didn’t even do his act, he just showed a clip of his new movie with Jessica Alba, did 30 seconds of unrehearsed talk show style blather with Bill Bellamy, and then walked out. I actually felt cheated. What’s worse - thinking that I was about to see totally unfunny stand up from totally unfunny Dane Cook, or actually feeling gipped that totally unfunny Dane Cook didn’t even bother to do totally unfunny stand up, he just stood there.

Thank God they gave five minutes to Robert Schimmel. At least one person at NBC still understands that if you’re going to do a show about stand up comedy, it helps to have funny comedians.

TVSquad panned the episode, too.

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