Despite the fact that some standup comedians manage to become A-List mega-stars (e.g. Amy Schumer, Louis CK, Kevin Hart, etc.), the reality is that even the most well-known comics see their popularity plateau at some point. Patton Oswalt is one of the few comedians who has managed to avoid this trap.
He’s done so by finding new venues for his comedy including TV (he can be seen in the brilliant Netflix original “Lady Dynamite,” and does the voiceover for ultra-‘80s nostalgia fest “The Goldbergs”), movies (he recently appeared in “Keeping Up with the Joneses”) and using his sharp wit on Twitter.
Despite his reputation for self-deprecating humor, unflinchingly honest critiques of human behavior, and commentary on ‘80s music and scary movies, Oswalt has used his notoriety to lend a powerful voice to issues ranging from politics to human rights.
Despite struggling through the personal tragedy of his wife’s death in April, the comedian experience professional success this year with an Emmy for his incredible stand-up special, “Talking for Clapping,” and the news that he would join the “Mystery Science Theatre 3000” reboot as TV’s Son of TV’s Frank. At the end of the day, however, he’s still a normal guy who enjoys ranting about “Star Wars” and ‘80s nostalgia.
This Friday, November 11, Oswalt will visit the Mystic Showroom at Mystic Lake Casino Hotel for a night full of witty, snarky, and nerdy stand-up for diehard Oswalt-maniacs and newbies alike. Before his visit, we chatted with the comic about managing audience expectations, Twitter-feuding with self-proclaimed “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli, and the upcoming “MST3K” reboot (spoiler: he wouldn’t spill).
The Growler: You seem to always have something going on with TV, movies, stand-up, etc. What’s been your main priority recently?
Patton Oswalt: I’ve just been trying to get back on stage and do more [stand-up] sets. I’ve done some guest spots, some TV and movies. But I’m really not committed to anything really specific right now.
G: What about the new “MST3K”? Is that coming along?
PO: I can tell you that I’m done filming my episodes, but I can’t tell you anything else.
G: Was the experience of being a part of “MST3K” everything you thought it would be?
PO: It was incredible. I really enjoyed it. But again, I can’t tell you anything else.
G: Switching gears, of everything you’ve done this year my favorite has to be the Twitter fight you had in September with Martin Shkreli [the self-proclaimed “Pharma Bro,” best known as the guy who upped the price of a drug used by AIDS patients from $13.50 a pill to $750. A real peach. Click here to read about the fight]. Do you think that Twitter has given guys like him a platform to try and “create” personas? Or do they just show the world what these people are really like?
PO: That guy is just someone who wants attention. He thinks that just because he’s rich that makes him funny and clever; he’s just not. That’s the thing: being rich doesn’t make you cool. You have to be cool first. All Twitter does is give people more access to people. If someone is awful, they’re awful no matter what the platform.
G: After winning the Emmy earlier this year, do you feel like audiences have greater expectations for your stand-up when they see you live?
PO: Honestly, the best thing for an audience is to have no expectations going in. That’s how comedy works best: if they have zero expectations for me, the same way I go in with zero expectations for them.
If You Go:
Mystic Lake Casino
Friday, November 11
Click here for details