No one (and we do mean no one) likes a heckler at a comedy show. It's a toss up between the comic on stage and the paying audience member when it comes to who actually hates them the most. But at least a good comic has the power to shut them down with sniper-like accuracy–or at the very least they can call for security a lot quicker with the aid of a microphone. We decided to ask one of our comic pals K-von (who is performing at Brea Improv this Wednesday Oct 16th) to break down the various types of hecklers and after you read this, pretty please don't turn into any of them.
The “I'm so pretty that I'm going to have to make a lot of noise so that people notice I'm sitting here” heckler (an OC staple).
Why she's tough: Because it's hard to rationalize with someone who doesn't have a brain. She can't stand the idea of coming to a dark room and sitting there watching someone else being the center of attention for any period of time. She can't control her outburst because the thought of no one paying attention to her is like a threat to her whole existence. While one is bad, it becomes even worse when they join evil forces in the form of a “bachelorette party.”
The “I'm so drunk I can be as loud and rude as I want” heckler.
Why they're tough: First of all, they are drunk, loud, and rude. Secondly, they usually come in a pack. Once a small pocket of people becomes a distraction, it can send a damaging ripple through your whole crowd if you don't address it correctly.
The “Soccer-mom type super-supportive” heckler.
Why she's tough: Because she is being loud and nice at the same time. She is clapping it up while others in the crowd are silent. She is shouting words of encouragement like, “Ohhh, come on you guys. That was good! Keep going! You are doing so great!” She'll even fake laugh for you at the wrong time to help get your show going, whether you need it or not. If you tell her to shut the hell up, you look really bad to everyone. But you also can't concentrate because she's being… well, loud and nice.
The "I'm going to heckle while he's talking, but clam up when he addresses the heckler” heckler.
Why he's tough: He is too loud to talk over but when you ask, "Who is talking?” they become completely silent. We all know you can't fight an enemy you can't see. This guy is like the Nightcrawler in the movie X-Men. When you go to take a swing, poof! He disappears and you're just left floundering in midair.
The "I feel bad for the race/gender/species/ or celebrity you just made a joke about” heckler.
Why they're tough: These people are overly sensitive. They don't understand that you are making a joke and that it's not meant to be serious. You could even be sarcastically making a point and they just say, "Ohhhhhhhhhh.” That is a horrible sound that every comedian hates. "Ohhhhhhhh!” It's also that sound that people make when they have just seen a puppy. Too many "ohhhhhh's” and the audience starts to feel bad with them instead of suspend reality and just laugh.
The "I hate your guts and will let you know in front of all these people to your face” heckler.
Why he's tough: Because he is obviously not afraid of you and will beat you up.
K-von performs at the Brea Improv Wednesday October 16th, 120 South Brea Blvd. 92821, (714) 482-0700. For tickets go to www.Improv.com. For more info, visit www.k-voncomedy.com or follow him on Twitter: @KvonComedy.