by Ryan Meehan
Andy Kindler has been paying his dues in the entertainment industry since 1984. You may know him as “Andy” from the hit TV series “Everybody Loves Raymond” during its ten year run on CBS. He’s also a sports correspondent on The Late Show with David Letterman, and has appeared on “Dr. Katz: Professional Therapist”, a show which helped launch Comedy Central to being one of the most popular channels on cable. And, he’s been in the comedy scene for long enough to spot a hack when he sees one: Comparing actor Dane Cook’s rise to comedy stardom to the rise of Adolf Hitler, he followed it up by mentioning that Cook was actually worse because “At least Hitler had a point of view”. He’ll be appearing at the Speakeasy in Rock Island Thursday, November 4th for one show only at 8:00 PM. And he’s also our guest this week in 5 Questions.
1. The sports correspondence pieces you do on Letterman are hilarious…are you going to be doing one of those for the upcoming World Series?
So happy you enjoy the pieces. Also glad I suggested you refer to them as “hilarious.” There is no plan to have me cover the World Series, unless it’s a surprise and they haven’t told me. Maybe I should pack just in case. At any rate, I won’t leave the country.
2. You were a judge this year on Last Comic Standing…What’s your overall take on that show?
We all wanted to make a show that wasn’t cheesy while showcasing funny people, and I think we accomplished that. I only wish there was more dancing.
3. How did you fall into doing your “State of the Industry” address every year at the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal, Canada?
Many years ago I presented a live presentation of an article I wrote for National Lampoon called “The Hacks Handbook.” It went well and the festival requested I try something else the next year. My manager suggested the title, and the rest is maybe not history, but certainly something.
4. What’s more difficult…Doing standup comedy or shooting a television show in front of a live studio audience like you did on Everybody Loves Raymond? And which one is more fun?
They can both be difficult and/or frightening. When things are going well, everything is fun. I think I’m being vague and/or evasive. I can’t tell which. Put me down for being in favor of fun.
4b. Who is the best live standup comedian in America right now and what makes them so good?
I can’t choose one, because there are many comedians I love. Paul F Tompkins. Zach Galifianakis. That’s two right there. And there’s more but my head is spinning from this interrogation. What makes them so good is that they take funny pills. Some of them prefer funny drinks or humor lozenges.
5. What projects do you have planned for the next year? Are you still going to be doing standup?
I will be doing a lot of stand up, all across the country. Check your local listings, whatever that means. Next January I will be a recurring voice on an animated show on Fox called “Bob’s Burgers.” I play a mortician named Mort. Please watch. Don’t make me beg.
Andy’s website: www.andykindler.com
His guide for hacks: http://www.andykindler.com/none.html
Andy at Super Bowl XLIV: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5Y5LSJdgfQ
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