Aaron Karo: Molasses’ kid brother

Jill Schleiden

KC Improv comedian Aaron Karo
KC Improv comedian Aaron Karo

While watching Aaron Karo’s standup, time moved slower than his namesake- cold corn syrup.

Karo’s show on Nov. 11 at the Improv bored everyone- the house was half full and only a quarter of them were laughing. (Did I mention they sell alcohol at the Improv?) But it seemed the rest of us were laughing more at the inebriated women in the front row than at Karo.

The show began 15 minutes late, and the opener featured jokes about vasectomy coupons and the phrase, “God bless you, goddamnit.”

Sounds funny, right? Wrong. Despite a plethora of great joke materials, the delivery fell flat.

My hopes perked up a bit when Aaron Karo finally strode on stage, and crashed again when he mixed up the punchline of his first joke.

And while it might have been the first error, it certainly wasn’t the last. There were more “Ums,” “Ers,” and “Anyway, craps,” than there were punchlines. And when he did remember the rest of a line, he was usually too busy laughing at his own jokes to finish them for the audience.

And Karo seemed a little shorter on material than his opener, too: He joked about drinking, sex, drinking, dating, drinking, why marriage sucks, drinking, oh and drinking.

Karo’s jokes didn’t seem to match his age, 31, though they certainly showed his maturity. Though if you’ve been telling the same kinds of jokes since you were 21, you’d think you’d have figured out how to make them funny.

The only time the whole audience really got to laughing was when Karo mocked some hapless audience member- and then promptly scrapped that joke, too, with a few shameless sells for his website and new CD. Hard to believe he’s been working as a comedian in some right for 10 years.

One of the comedian’s greatest weapons is the ability to link jokes throughout a routine. Karo’s attempts at this seemed more weakly disguised plugs to sell his website some more. Nobodylikesyourbangs.com, anyone? Oh wait, want to visit Ruminations.com? No? They’re really funny…not.

In an interview with Karo last week, he said he was saving his best joke for the Improv, but either he was lying or he forgot the joke somewhere between the airport and the comedy club. There was no best joke.

He also mentioned he was “too old for the ‘getting wasted at the frat house’ jokes.”

True; now they’re “getting drunk in my apartment alone” jokes.

But you know, the most aggravating part of this show had to be his voice. He tried to talk in a lower voice than was natural to him, and instead of sounding funny, he just sounded like a public speaker with no morals and no point to the talk.

Now, a little sampling of the jokes. Karo, talking about a wedding he performed, said:

“People were laughing, people were crying…”

People were groaning, people were bored…oh wait, that was the Improv crowd. And plenty left early.

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