Entertaining Saturday night, live with David Spade


GBPAC/Courtesy Photo

Comedian David Spade performed at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on Sept. 22, kicking off the Fall 2018 Artist Series.

LEZIGA BARIKOR, Campus Life Editor | [email protected]

On Saturday, Sept. 22, David Spade was once again live in the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC), marking the start of the Fall 2018 Artist Series. The GBPAC also celebrated the launch of its 18th season with this show.

It is my deeply held conviction that Spade voiced the most underrated Disney prince of all time: Kuzco from “The Emperor’s New Groove.” As a big fan of that movie and others works featuring Spade such as “Benchwarmers,” “Rules of Engagement” and “Saturday Night Live” (SNL), I was very excited to hear he was coming to UNI. However, I’d never experienced much of Spade’s comedy beyond what I had seen on TV and in interviews, so I went in not knowing what to expect.

Spade’s style of observational humor is similar to most of the humor I encounter daily. He opened his show by thanking his opening acts — both of whom were personalities from the television channel Comedy Central — and quickly launched into some smaller bits on his travel experience and the last show he did. In particular, Spade mentioned how, at his show the previous night in Branson, MO, no one had seemed to want him there, so it was quite the underwhelming confidence boost.

One of his opening acts had done some crowd-surveying, and he got the general sense that some people hadn’t paid to attend the show. Spade noted the people sitting in the box seats of the GBPAC who were wearing shorts, saying that they probably would have dressed nicer if they were attending a Jerry Seinfeld comedy show. My friends and I who attended did dress nicer, changing out of what we had worn to the football game earlier in the day, but we used our free student tickets, so I found his comment very ironic.

That brand of self-deprecating humor persisted for most of Spade’s set. I think what made a lot of his jokes funny was how easy it was to relate to his experiences despite him being a celebrity. One of his longer bits was about how he always likes name-dropping his friend Adam Sandler —for example, when he goes to McDonald’s and the McRib isn’t available.

“Adam’s not going to like this,” he quipped.

Spade went on to describe how he tried to use that phrase, unsuccessfully, to get out of minor inconveniences like undergoing physical examinations. While at the doctor’s office, he found out that he weighed 20 pounds more than he anticipated. That’s when his doctor quipped back, “Adam’s not going to like this!”

It’s always interesting to hear actors talk about hanging out on sets. Recounting his time on the set of comedy film “Grown Ups,” Spade noted that Chris Rock was a less-than-sympathetic co-star. Spade dramatically brushed off Rock’s slight, referring to him as more of a work acquaintance than a friend.

Other topics Spade covered ranged from cramped airports, looking ugly in rooms with multiple mirrors, romance and celebrity culture. It seemed that Spade back-loaded any potentially controversial content, keeping jokes on the topic of Caitlyn Jenner towards the last 15 minutes. He mainly steered away from political jokes, only mentioning President Trump once in his whole set.

One personal story I found quite entertaining was Spade’s description of his father taking him and his siblings out for dinner and driving them home drunk at a time when driving under the influence was not yet a crime in the United States.

According to Spade, police officers were practically cheering his father on for having a good time while Spade cried in the back seat worrying about his safety.

There was quite a bit of X-rated content in Spade’s show that I didn’t necessarily anticipate, but I also hadn’t done my homework beforehand about his comedy. In all other aspects, Spade’s show was very tame and enjoyable. I definitely think he’s far more entertaining than the recent SNL cast and worth checking out again.