After twenty-eight years of wielding a microphone on the stand-up stage, Dave Attell has built quite an impressive career by staying true to an unapologetically un-PC style of comedy. In our book, that's a grand accomplishment given the direction shit is going these days. With his shows at the Irvine Improv fast approaching this weekend (October 10th and 11th), we took the opportunity to get on his level (as if) and talked to him about what's up with his show "Comedy Underground," the possibility of "Dave's Old Porn" coming back, and to wax a bit about social media seeing as how this man still has a flip phone. No joke.
OC Weekly (Ali Lerman): I've seen you doing some "tease tweeting" about Comedy Underground but I haven't heard when season two will be starting. What's going on with that?
Dave Attell: I don't know if there'll be a new season so what I've been doing is a Comedy Underground live, mostly at the Village Underground in New York which is where we shot the show. I don't know if they're going to bring it back because the network hasn't given us a yes or a no. I guess we are kind of in this hazy area waiting to figure out what is going on. I'm hoping that it will come back because the reaction from the comics and from the fans of comedy was so strong. For now, I just want to keep doing it live until we figure it out. It'd be great if it comes back but I also think it's a great live show that maybe we can tour all over. It's been really cool to get all of these great comics to drop in and do a set and the crowds really seem to dig when the comics are on stage together.
You put on such a fresh and fantastic show with incredibly strong comics. I'd kill to be in the audience if that happened.
It's a lot of fun and I'd love to tour it now but because of money and the comics all being so busy, it makes it hard. As of now, I'm just trying to feel it out. Also finding the right club to do it in is important because it should have the right feel and be big enough for one or two of us to be on stage. It really is a lot of fun to do but it's really up to the network and the fans. Let's just hope they want it back.
Trust me, I'm hoping. It's interesting to see you being more active on social media because the last time I saw you, you were still using a flip phone.
[Laughs.] Oh I still have that! It's like, if it breaks where are they going to fix it? The Smithsonian? I actually have a bunch of phones you know. I have the flip phone, the burners…an iPhone. I really do the whole social media thing for the fans because it brings me no joy. I don't feel like my life is all that interesting. I see so many people posting stuff about eating salads and going to the gym, it just seems kind of redundant. I don't need to be all up in people's faces like that. It's bad enough that I'm on stage doing an hour of dick jokes.
It really is a strange beast. I see the importance of it when it comes to promoting but I hate seeing people's gym posts while I'm shoving a cupcake down my throat.
Yeah, you're a journalist so you get it and I know we're simpatico with this. It's just that now if you're in the public eye, you can never turn it off. People with all of this tweeting and posting, I don't really care. The people who come to my shows are the people that I want to perform for. That's what makes me happy. I wish I was more like Doug Stanhope when it comes to Twitter, he's totally fearless. I'm always second guessing myself now because of this PC shit. We live in very bland times and as we go forward, live performance will probably be the last place that people can see and hear things that have no filter. I've had to adjust to it but hopefully it won't be like this forever. I don't know what's going to happen because for me myself, I'd rather be at home looking at porn. It's getting more and more difficult to get me out of the house. I am still trying to adjust though.
Urghhh…PC shit makes me crazy. OK so not to beat a dead horse but since you mentioned porn, I really hope somehow your show "Dave's Old Porn" would come back.
I'm definitely looking into getting the rights to restore the show. To all of the people who are asking me about it and watched it, thank you. I'm hoping that in the near future I'll have the opportunity to finish the shows that were shot and never edited with people like Jay Mohr, Doug Stanhope and Bingo, and the late great Otto and George. It's really up to the network to let me continue on with the show. I loved doing that show. I was very happy with it and I put my heart and soul into it. I think there are enough fans out there who like retro vintage porn with comics commenting on it that it would the coolest thing ever if we got to do it again. I'm so totally happy when someone comes up to me and says they really loved it.
So since you are into retro porn and that comes with a full bush, what do you think about the new wave of chicks shaving designs into their pubes?
[Laughs.] As long as it doesn't promote terrorism, I'm all for it. I'd say every lady has their god given right to make it the way they want it. I'm a fan of all styles but I would say trimming is probably the best. All gone is a bit extreme but, I'm into that too. I do know that the front yard should match the back yard. By that I mean, if it's waxed up front the back shouldn't look like a Vietnam jungle. If it looks like a scene from Jurassic Park in the back and it looks like Frozen up front, that's not good.
Glad I asked. I think. OK let's get down to the nitty gritty here Dave. Irvine Improv. New club. Feelings?
The Irvine Improv is in my top three favorite clubs and I'm not just saying that. The crowds are great and by the way, it's in a mall, but it's not particularly a mall crowd which is pleasantly surprising when you are like, urghh I don't have a bunch of mall jokes. Sometimes it's a little tight in Orange County but there is definitely a cool crowd for comedy out there. The Irvine club gets it so I'm always happy when I get to play there. I'm hoping the crowd comes out and supports it because if not, I'll be questioning whether I should've flyered people's cars. It's going to be a fun weekend.
Check out Dave Attell at the Irvine Improv October 10th and 11th, 31 Fortune Drive Irvine, CA 92618, (949) 854-5455. For tickets go to www.Improv.com. For more info, go to his website www.DaveAttell.com, see "Comedy Underground" for one night only at The Comedy Store October 15th, and be sure to follow him on Twitter @Attell.