Kyle Kinane

Thu Dec 12, 2013
Hemlock Tavern
7:30pm & 9:30pm
Theater, Stand Up Comedy


Kyle Kinane is an exceptionally smart comedian who’s made a career out of acting stupid. He perpetuates and revels in his hobo-clown persona, characterizing himself on Whiskey Icarus as “Uncle Barbecue [telling] his dum-dum stories,” or perhaps “the wise high-school janitor,” the type of genial burnout who would name the tracks on his second stand-up album after the songs on Kiss’ Destroyer, just because. (He did the same thing with 2010’s Death Of The Party, only with Cheap Trick’s Dream Police.) But the mind behind that character is as sharp as they come, capable of sussing out the unexpected angles in an anecdote, as in a tour-de-force bit where he breaks down the multitude of questions raised by his airplane seatmate deciding to bring a Foot Locker shopping bag full of pancakes on board. (“Pancakes got X-rayed that day!”)
The other great contradiction of Kinane’s comedy is his ability to render ostensibly depressing material playful, and even heartening, via silly details and sly wordplay. He turns a lonely, drunken Wendy’s run into a late-night heist with an unamused cabbie in the role of getaway driver. He sees his sad life reflected back at him on the face of an unsliced pizza, and soldiers on anyway, marveling, “This giant taco tastes like Italy!” And finally, he proposes using his own headstone as an opportunity to elicit laughs from cemetery passers-by, perhaps the finest distillation of his ability to fuse the bleak with the uplifting. Kinane’s material is frequently self-deprecating, sardonic, and debased, but the underlying joy informing his approach gives it life, even when he’s talking about death. - Onion AV Club



  1. Hemlock Tavern
    1131 Polk St, San Francisco, CA