Follow GuyMacPherson on Twitter

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Jan. 31: Paul Provenza

Okay, okay, I know I said Paul Provenza would be on the show last week. But stuff happens. He had to reschedule, but was kind enough to tell me ahead of time. Big-time comedy stars sometimes get busy with big-time comedy things. They don't need to do a late-night radio show/podcast based in Vancouver; they do it out of the goodness of their hearts.

Provenza e-mailed me back yesterday to say he's in for tonight. It should be a good one. The guy, who you probably know was the director/producer of The Aristocrats, is an encylopedia of comedy knowledge and an eloquent spokesman on its behalf. I became a fan of his back in the early 1980s when I'd see him breaking up Johnny Carson on the old Tonight Show. And get this: the emcee the night he first took to the stage at the age of 17 was none other than Jay Leno. Provenza has done Leno's Tonight Show eight or ten times. But wait, it gets better: I heard that when Letterman first moved to CBS, Provenza almost took over for him. The job, we all know, went to... Conan O'Brien. I'm thinking he might have a take on the whole imbroglio at NBC.

And if his stand-up cred doesn't impress you (and it should), perhaps you'd be interested to know he played Casey Clark in five episodes of The Facts of Life. You also maybe saw him in Miami Vice, Charles in Charge, Empty Nest, Northern Exposure, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, The West Wing, and Beggars & Choosers. Now are you intrigued? Thought so.

ADDENDUM: We'll be joined in studio by friend of What's So Funny? and Paul Provenza himself, Daniel Packard. We haven't seen Daniel in a while so it'll be great. Should be a fun and spirited conversation.

Monday, January 25, 2010


Comedians Cory Mack and Harry Doupe are involved in an intriguing project. If you're a Canadian comic reading this, follow the links and add a profile. It'll be interesting to see what the final numbers are, not to mention a great resource. Also, the name is great. Say it out loud for the full effect. Spread the word to your comedy buddies:

As a Canadian Comedian it's time to stand up and be counted!

In an effort to have a definitive record in honour of the ones who entertain us, Comediapedia has begun its search for each and every Comedian in Canada.

Comediapedia aspires to be the first complete living record of everyone who has ever dared call themselves a Canadian Comedian with direct links to Canadian Comedians and other features like:

- a current cross-country comedy calendar of upcoming performances by your favourite Canadian Comedians

- a compelling history of the Canadian Comedians and their stories compiled by Harry Doupe

- Comediapedia's e-newsletter

- anecdotes and road stories from the comics you've heard about, and those that you are going to hear about

We need you! We've spent months compiling a list of Canadian comedians for one reason... we are gathering all Canadian Comedians together in one place to highlight the amazing talent that is produced here in our country. Every Canadian Comedian, from amateur to professional - from sea to sea - with talents in Standup/Sketch/Improv and Musical/Variety - will receive an invitation to create a profile on

It's simple... check out the website to create your profile:

You can share as much or as little as you like... and then spread the word!

Together we can bring attention and regard to our profession.

Without agenda and full of hope, I invite you to join us.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Jan. 24: The Comedy Roundtable returns

It's been a while since we've used the comedy roundtable format. I don't know why. But when Paul Provenza wrote to say he had to postpone his appearance on What's So Funny? another week, a lightbulb went on over my head. The comedy roundtable!, my brain told myself. It is time. Especially given the fact that Conan O'Brien's version of The Tonight Show went off the air on Friday after only seven months on the air and everyone seems to have an opinion on it (I've yet to meet or hear of anyone who's pro-Leno). So I organized a top-notch panel for you. Ian Boothby, Sean Proudlove and Jane Stanton will be in studio while SGU Stargate Universe's Peter Kelamis will be weighing in from La-La Land, where he currently resides. We'll sit around and chew the fat on this momentous situation as well as whatever else we think of. If you want to join in, give us a call between 11 and midnight at 604-684-7561.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Episode 179ish

One of my favourite episodes of 2009 is now up and running over at iTunes. It's episode 179ish of What's So Funny? featuring Harry Doupe, wherein the former Vancouverite drops by and talks about the old days, and gives his barbed opinions on the likes of Russell Peters, Gerry Dee, Mark Breslin, Rich Elwood and Rick Ducommun. It was interesting to learn, according to Doupe, that Elwood, the owner of the old Punchlines club, tried to get Doupe to sign an exclusivity contract. You always hear of complaints about that kind of contract levelled at Yuk Yuk's.

Doupe gives the Statelessness of the Industry speech every year at the Canadian Comedy Awards. My hope is that each December, when he's back in town visiting family for Christmas, he makes a tradition of coming on the show.

If you want to listen right here and now, see below. Otherwise download it to your pod machine and listen at your leisure. And while you're at iTunes, for God's sakes leave a comment and/or review. How much do I have to beg? It's not becoming and I think neither of us enjoys it:

Harry Doupe, from December 27, 2009:

Uh, not so much

So we were guestless, as you would have heard had you tuned in. That's what you get by flying by the seat of your proverbial pants. Yes, I am wearing actual pants, too (as far as you know), but they're not the ones I'm talking about. Storck and I never managed to hook up in time. No doubt he's reading his e-mails Monday morning slamming his palm to his forehead V-8 style thinking he blew his chance at co-op radio superstardom. Oh well. It happens. Maybe next time he's in town.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Jan. 17: Mike Storck (probably)

Hello good people of Blogland. I bet you're wondering who the guest is tonight, aren't you? So am I, frankly. I have a strong feeling it will be Baltimore native, Mike Storck, who performed at Lafflines this weekend. I dropped him an e-mail yesterday (I like to plan ahead) asking if he'd like to be on the show. Then I was out in Chilliwack all afternoon watching a community theatre presentation of Willy Wonka (now I know where Charlie Bucket and Veruca Salt come from!). I got home to a message from Mike saying he'd love to be on the show. At press time (i.e. right now, 7:30) we're in a game of e-mail tag. But as Charlie Bucket likes to say, you've got to be optimistic.

But, hey, next week... Check out who we have on next Sunday! None other than Paul Provenza, the director of The Aristocats.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Jan. 10: Mark Breslin (repeat)

We're off this week. That is to say, there won't be an original show. Instead we offer a special encore presentation of the interview with Yuk Yuk's grand pooh-bah Mark Breslin (by special request). Sure, it's available as a podcast on iTunes, but there's nothing like hearing it on the radio.

Sorry to be so brief, but I'm off to see Joey DeFrancesco tonight at the Cellar. It's not comedy-related, but what the hell. Here's a video of the guy:

Monday, January 4, 2010


Thought I'd pass this along:


January 4th 2010




PitchMarket 2010's TV Series Panel Pitch features a handful of talented applicants leveraging an extended pitching session to an entire panel of decision makers, while other participants watch and learn. The is a unique opportunity to get your ideas in front of heavy-weight industry decision-makers and trendsetters.

Application deadline for this unique opportunity is January 15th 2009. For more information and application forms visit

PitchMarket 2010 announces its first TV Series Pitch Competition! Any registrant of PitchMarket 2010 (Sunday PM or Combo Pass) is eligible to apply for FREE!

TV Series may be any style, length, or genre (i.e. ½ hour reality show, animated children’s series, 1 hour drama, etc). We will even consider mini-series.

Submissions will be juried by industry professionals and TEN finalists will be selected to pitch LIVE on Sunday, March 7, 2010.

Pitches will be 20 minutes in length and include feedback from the executives. Other attendees may sit in on your pitch to watch and learn.

If you would like the opportunity to pitch your TV series to a panel of executives please send up to 3 pages (maximum) of show bible including:

  • logline
  • summary of 1st season
  • summary of pilot episode
  • main character breakdown
  • any other important information

The BEST PITCH wins CASH as well as professional development services. Second and Third place receive development services. Final prize amounts TBA.

Prizes so far include: TV Boot Camp training, Script PIMP development notes, script consultation, iScript professional readings, software, industry event passes, and more!



Are you a film school graduate? Have you got a great idea for a series? Developed a pilot? Got twenty-four pages of gold? If any of these describe you - don’t miss out on the opportunity to pitch directly to industry executives, literary agents, and managers. This is Hollywood North’s chance to grab some serious face-time with industry pros. This year’s PitchMarket features two days of pitch workshops, coaching sessions, career accelerators for industry advancement, panel pitches and face-to-face pitch meetings. Chat with story editors, funding agencies, and other industry organizations in the Pitch Cafe or enjoy the Indie Lounge, a relaxed networking space with special guest indie producers and directors.


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Jan. 3: Uh, nobody

We'll ring in the New Year on What's So Funny? with comedy. No guest tonight, just clips from the world of comedy. If you have any requests, leave a comment here, or call the studio (604-684-7561), or drop us a line at Otherwise sit back and enjoy the show. The non-guest shows are never included to the podcast family so if you're not listening tonight, it's gone forever.

That's it. Short and sweet.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Episodes 177 & 178

Oh hey, I forgot to wish you all a Happy New Year. I was thinking it.

Anywho, I just noticed that two more episodes have been added to the What's So Funny? podcast family. Number 177 (and remember, these numbers are approximate but I'm sticking with them) is with Jay Brown and Eddie Brill, while episode number 178 is with Marc Maron. What's not to like about these two? Go download them at iTunes or listen right now right here:

Eddie Brill & Jay Brown, from December 13, 2009:

Marc Maron, from December 20, 2009:

Peter Kelamis

Check this out. Vancouver's own (and 2-time What's So Funny? guest) Peter Kelamis has been discovered by The Jay Leno Show. Or at least the two knobs who book the comedy on the show. They were also the talent scouts on NBC's Last Comic Standing and on The Tonight Show when Jay hosted.

I say "knobs" a bit unfairly. For all I know, they are experts in their field. I've only seen them on LCS. I found myself disagreeing with them more than not so that has forever tainted them in my eyes. I'm like that.

But, hey, if they book Kelamis on Leno's primetime show, maybe I'll change my tune. What's happened so far is they've posted a clip of Peter's to the show's website under The Laugh Squad. Apparently an IT guy in their office was sitting around laughing at a clip of Kelamis and that caught their eye. Or ear, as it were. So they posted said clip and asked for comments. Maybe if enough people went over there and raved about him, they'd put him on the show.

So get going, already. Do your part. Get the local guy a spot on American network TV.