The Sklar Brothers Royal Theatre, Toronto ON, March 26
Published Mar 27, 2016With the Sklar Brothers, two delightful observational comedians came together as one standup package. In their spontaneous yet refined performance, they delivered jokes alone, they overlapped each other to create a hypnotizing, humorous barrage, and they spoke in unison, each in carefully portioned measures that required unbelievable intuition and collaboration skills.
Jordan Cohen opened the show with some ordinary jokes about Tinder and dating, then ended strong with a few ridiculous anecdotes. His delivery was generic, but overall his set was enjoyable thanks to his quirky story about stealing a stranger's job interview.
Up-and-comer Jhanelle Dennis then followed his set by discussing the phenomenon of "chicken pills," a product made to fatten up chickens that is used by Jamaican women to fill out their curves. In addition, she talked about how her family used to tell her she was evil because she cried out of both the inside and outside corners of her eyes, she told a story about successfully fighting for more toaster strudel icing on Twitter, and she frankly recounted how she discovered she was allergic to lube. Though most of her jokes only garnered chuckles, her set was satisfyingly entertaining because her material was strikingly unique and she was very charismatic.
The Sklar Brothers began their set with their signature opening piece: five minutes of brand new material about the city they were touring through. Though the twin comics only had the earlier half of that day to come up with Toronto-based humour, as opposed to the usual two-and-a-half days that they were given to create local jokes on their show Finding the Funny on Howl, their Canadian observations were impressively solid. Their ironic jesting about Wayne Gretzky being absent from the Hockey Hall of Fame was very funny, as was their bit about Rob Ford's death.
In addition, Jason and Randy Sklar talked a lot about fatherhood. They hilariously recounted how one of them confused the Jamestown Massacre with the Jonestown Massacre and ended up unnecessarily explaining cults and mass suicide to their young daughter, they comically imagined a strip club called "Daddy Likey" that catered to fathers, and they joked about how their children treat their old baseball cards like Pokemon. Similarly, they also talked about how they don't want their daughters to grow up to be Kardashians, then went on a great tangent about how the Kardashians' level of fame is so ridiculous that even Armenian peasants worship them.
Though both of those sections of material were really fun, it was in their stories and in their bits where they excavated numerous lines from the same premise that the Sklar Brothers excelled most. Their narrative about meeting Ozzie Smith that involved their Dad getting the legendary baseball player to fetch him buns on two occasions over two decades apart was amazing. Likewise, their story about Randy breaking his tooth that segued into their portrayal of Randy as a toothless liberal redneck was fantastic: their fruitful Jeff Foxworthy parody chunk where they ran off "You know you might be a liberal redneck when..." jokes was effortlessly hilarious. Moreover, their bit about hipster ghosts that also included a wonderful series of rapid fire lines was equally funny.