Crackers Comedy Club in Broad Ripple
Bob Zany, the cigar-chomping, wise-acre whose “Zany Report” is a popular staple of the Bob and Tom Show, rolled through his recent Crackers booking on cruise control. A comedy lifer, Zany’s act is the proverbial horse that knows its way home. Saddle up and nap, there’s never a doubt you’ll reach the homestead.
A big chunk of Zany’s shtick revolves around his repartee with the audience. It’s good. He’s funny, telling an uncooperative psychiatric nurse, “Fuck, no wonder your patients are crazy,” but his professionalism eventually counts against him. He’s such a master at controlling the crowd that his spontaneity feels orchestrated.
Zany punctuates his delivery with verbal cues, which work well to draw the crowd into his timing. Punch line, two beats and then, in a stage whisper aside, “That’s sarcasm,” or, “Hence means therefore,” or, “That means he’ll be masturbating.” His act is dry and the trick brings the crowd on board from the get-go. It’s like a real-time Cliff’s Notes for joke digesting dummies.
“You don’t go to high school as long as I did without shit clicking,” he deadpanned.
And you don’t perform on stage as long as Zany has without picking up the shortcuts. He hits all his marks and he isn’t stingy with his time. After running over his allotted spot, the sound booth cuffed him with a couple blinks of a flashlight, the universal show biz cue to wrap it up. Zany flipped them off, so they briefly killed the stage lights; the playful give and take delighting the crowd. When the lights came back up, Zany was smiling and the audience was in stitches. Business as usual.