Tom Thakkar JFL42, Toronto ON, September 27
Published Sep 28, 2018If his smart banter with Nikki Glaser on their podcast "You Up?" is any indication, Tom Thakkar is a smart guy with a strong grasp on the world around him.
And that's exactly what his 40 minutes at the Comedy Bar on Thursday proved. Skipping entirely over crowd work, he delved into a fast-paced set packed with clever observational insights.
Thakkar's able to self-deprecate on stage in a way that's highly relatable and enjoyable to watch. He loves flying Spirit Airlines, for example, which he compared to "Medicaid for the sky" and through which he recently paid a mere $34 for a flight. He admits that this is like flirting with death: Even if the plane does crash, "it's still kind of a good deal." A commentary on the absurdity of pinching pennies even in potentially high-risk situations, Thakkar rips on himself while secretly also ripping on every audience member who's done the very same thing.
It's this style of clever and relatable one-liners that constitutes much of his set — and when he does delve deeper into stories from his childhood, he fills them with short, sharp jokes. There's room to build tension in each of his stories, however, and it's clear that Thakkar's got a slew of complex experiences to draw from on stage that would be perfect for doing so.
His dad walked out on him, his ex-girlfriend cheated on him while they were living together, and he regularly deals with racist comments as an "ethnically ambiguous" half-Indian man. He mentions, but gracefully glides over all of these things on stage, which left me, perhaps selfishly, wanting to know more.
Nonetheless, Thakkar's hour was full of creative and good-natured jokes. With his wit and energy, I have no doubt we'll be seeing him on JFL stages for years to come.