We bring the Seattle International Comedy Competition to Bremerton every year. And ever year, it’s great–we play a great venue for a great crowd (mostly…there are always a couple of loud and obnoxious types that rear their heads, but never so many as to ruin the show or anything…) and it’s a great show. And yet, almost every year in Bremerton, it gets a little weird when we announce the nightly order of finish for the show we just put on. It doesn’t matter who the judges are or where they’re from…there’s just something about the Bremerton show that makes simply acknowledging those performers who the judges felt did their best on that night full of unexpected and inexpiable drama.
…and it kind of…sort of…happened again.
So, it was a Saturday night at the beautiful Admiral Theater in Bremerton. This was the fourth of five shows in the final week of he 33rd Annual Seattle International Comedy Competition–and going into this show, the scores were astonishingly close. Almost unfathomably close–with the difference between 1st place down to fourth pace being only some tenths…even hundredths of a point. This show mattered–and all the performers knew it.
Michael Malone certainly knew it. He would not only be taking on the Bremerton audience and his fellow competitors…but also the Go Up First Curse. And Michael Malone took the fight right at everybody–it was perhaps one of the strongest and most consistent sets that anyone has had in this year’s competition. He wanted to send a message…hell, he wanted to end the whole competition right then and there.
And maybe he did–but Joe Klocek, who followed Michael, certainly wasn’t just going to give up. In fact, Joe came out and delivered haymaker after haymaker. Only a stronger dismount gave Michael the advantage.
The third competitor of the night, Elliot Maxx, started out very strong, getting to one of his edgier songs far more quickly than he had at any time previous in this year’s competition. Elliot’s set would go off on a few tangents from that point…but there were definitely big laughs throughout.
After an intermission, Tyrone Hawkins picked up the gauntlet that Michael had thrown down with his show opening set. Tyrone owned that stage tonight…and the crowd loved it.
Closing out the show was Landry, who has been rock solid this entire competition…and he brought it, yet again, on this night.
When it came time to announce the order of finish…the crowd accepted that Elliot was in 5th place and that Joe was in 4th place (though Joe, who had locked his keys in his car earlier in the night, wasn’t there to accept his props on this night)…but when Michael Malone was announced in 3rd place, the crowd reacted strongly–in the way that only Bremerton audiences seem to… There was a tidal wave like roar–some were cheering and some were booing–indicating that the audience did not necessarily agree with Michael not being higher in the order.
The odd thing was, the cheering for Landry in 2nd place…and then for Tyrone in 1st place for the night–was plenty loud. They obviously liked Landry and Tyrone a lot–so, I’m not sure what the audience wanted…a three-way tie for first place, perhaps?
Producer Ron Reid and I exchanged exasperated looks…shrugged our shoulders and simply accepted the simple fact: It’s Bremerton. There’s nothing more that we could have done.
Here’s the order of finish, the way the judges saw things, for this night.
Finals Week-Night Four Nightly Top 5
- Tyrone Hawkins (Tacoma, WA)
- Landry (Atlanta, GA/Toronto, ON)
- Michael Malone (Los Angeles, CA)
- Joe Klocek (San Francisco, CA)
- Elliot Maxx (Ballard, WA)
Lost a little bit in the crowd’s reaction for Michael Malone was the fact that Tyrone Hawkins had an excellent set and earned his second nightly win for the week. A very important factor when it comes to the close race to determine this year’s champion.
Despite being the only performer with two nightly wins this week, Tyrone does NOT have this competition wrapped up. There is only a single point separating first place from fourth place in this week. That means everything will depend on the fifth and final show of this final week of the 33rd Annual Seattle International Comedy Competition. Someone will be crowned as the new champion of this event…and that someone will be crowned tonight, Sunday November 25th, at the Comedy Underground, in Seattle.
SICC-33 Finals Week–Night Five
SUNDAY–November 25, 2012
Comedy Underground, Seattle