Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Event - The Doubleclicks, Molly Lewis, and Joseph Scrimshaw at Jammin' Java, September 10th, 2015 and the Black Cat, September 15th, 2015

The Doubleclicks at Jammin' Java
The Nerd Night Out Tour, headlined by the Doubleclicks and featuring Molly Lewis and Joseph Scrimshaw, made a stop at Jammin' Java in Vienna, Virginia on Thursday, September 10th, and another at the Black Cat in Washington, D.C. on September 15th. As we love the Doubleclicks, the redhead and I went to both shows.

As one might expect, both of the shows were very similar. After all, it would be kind of silly to expect that two musical acts and a comedian would completely rewrite their routines for shows that were less than a week apart. There were some slight differences that mostly amounted to the Doubleclicks performing a somewhat different selection of their music at each show, and a skit in the spirit of Dr. Seuss that was only performed at the Jammin' Java show. In addition, Professor Shyguy made a guest appearance at both shows, but played different material at each, and Storm DiCostanzo of the musical act Paul & Storm appeared at the Jammin' Java show but not the Black Cat show. For the most part, I'll be focusing on the Black Cat show in this post, and simply noting the few points where it diverged from the Jammin' Java show.

The Doubleclicks opened with the song Cats at Parties, their tribute to the travails of introverted nerds at social gatherings, bringing the crowd in for the refrain of "Party, Parties". After this kick-off to get the crowd into the spirit of the evening, Molly and Joseph joined them on stage for a fantastic humorous skit in which they mentioned the names of all of their sponsors while Aubrey interjected silly (and perfectly in character) insults like "son of a breakfast muffin" and "toilet ponies". The skit was filled with silly jokes and asides, setting the happy tone for the entire show.

As soon as the skit closed, Angela introduced Molly Lewis for her set, and as one would expect Molly proceeded to sing about murder, vaginas, potential pregnancy, and penises. She led off with her song about killing people in video games by karate chopping them in the rear end called Chop, Chop. After explaining the genesis of the song, and the fact that she had performed it in front of him when he was given a lifetime achievement award by the Harvard Humanist Community, Molly performed her Open Letter to Stephen Fry, and at Jammin' Java she threw in some of the additional material she has added to the song over the years. Molly then talked a little bit about her musical Thanksgiving vs. Christmas, noting that she is firmly on the side of Thanksgiving, before singing the song The Pumpkin Spice Lament, bemoaning the fact that pumpkin spice seems to always be prematurely overwhelmed by Christmas-themed flavors. Molly then moved on the genitalia portion of the show, first singing Kapo, her song about the Hawaiian goddess of fertility and her flying vagina, which includes the hilarious lyric "clam slam John Hamm", and then sang what she calls her dumbest song ever titled Johnny Dicklegs, about a cowboys with two giant penises instead of legs.

Joseph Scrimshaw
at the Black Cat
Knowing that once one sings a song about a cock-limbed cowboy there's nothing that can really do as a follow-up, Molly ended her set there. That left comedian Joseph Scrimshaw to come on stage and try to pick up the pieces, a fact that he was quick to point out. Scrimshaw quickly segued to talking about how he's from Minnesota, a state with the claim to fame that Oregon Trail, a game in which people would rather die of dysentery than stay in Minnesota, was developed there. From that point, he moved on to a set full of references to William Shatner tweeting about Earthquakes, the differences between people named Joe and people named Joseph, the utter lack of caring displayed by restaurant websites, and the frequency with which people blow him off in real time using Twitter. Much of the set was focused on Scrimshaw's two favorite topics: Star Wars, and Social Justice. This led to jokes about Obi Wan Kenobi Yelp reviews, light sabers and mansplaining, dick pictures as a romantic gesture (and a digression about Emperor Palpatine sending dick pics), the benefits of being old, and how much Joseph Scrimshaw hates Kinkos, or as it is called now, FedEx Office. As a side note, for reasons best left explained by Joseph Scrimshaw himself, one way to show him some love via Twitter is to send him a nice tweet with the hashtag #ScrewYouJosephScrimshaw.

The show stepped to the side for a bit and had Professor Shyguy make a guest appearance. Professor Shyguy uses his Nintendo GameBoy to make chiptune music. In both shows he did a duet with Angela from the Doubleclicks, singing My Eyes from Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along-Blog. At Jammin' Java he also performed a song in which all of the the words were first in alphabetical order and then in reverse alphabetical order, while at the Black Cat he performed a song that may have been called Turn Back Around, but to be honest, I didn't hear the title so I can't be sure. The redhead doesn't like chiptunes music, so she's not particularly enthusiastic about Professor Shyguy. The only real issue I have with his act is that he always seems to have his music just slightly too loud for the venue he is playing in, and it kind of overwhelms the lyrics. If he just reduced the music volume by a slight bit, he would be much more enjoyable.

After Professor Shyguy, the show got to the main event as the Doubleclicks took the stage. The main difference between the two shows was mostly in the number of songs the Doubleclicks performed. In the Jammin' Java show it seems that a portion of the time that would have otherwise been used for songs was instead devoted to a Dr. Seuss style skit involving everyone on the tour plus special guest Storm DeConstanza. It was a funny and fairly cute skit about sexism, but I liked the Black Cat show in which Aubrey and Angela played more music just a little bit more, mostly because I can't ever gwt enough of the Doubleclicks' music. That said, both shows had an excellent selection of the duo's music, including Cats and Netflix, President Snakes, Really Big Chickens, This Is My Jam, Nothing to Prove, Tabletop Games, and Clever Girl. At the Black Cat they pulled Maximilian the keyboard cat out to perform an adorable meowing version of the Doctor Who theme song, while at Jammin' Java they performed a spontaneously written song in which they took lyric suggestions to fill in to a Mad-Libs style form. As always, their performance was fantastic, full of wonderful geeky fun mixed with some pretty strong feminist themes.

Following the Doubleclicks set, Scrimshaw and Lewis came back to the stage with Aubrey and Angela for a round of Truth and Dice, a routine in which Scrimshaw rolled dice to determine which random somewhat silly question he would ask the other members of the tour with the goal of getting to know them better. So Aubrey was asked questions such as what kind of YouTube show Black Widow would have, or whether she would rather shoot fire or printer ink out of her hands (she picked printer ink when it was revealed should choose what color she could shoot), while Angela was asked what cool battle phrase she would shout ("Suck it patriarchy") and which Muppet would be most likely to send a dick picture (Gonzo). Molly was asked if she would accept a Candy Crush invitation from Wonder Woman, or if she would buy life insurance from George R.R. Martin (she opined that the policy would take so long to read that you'd die before you could sign it). The only problem with this segment is that because he was doing all of the dice rolling, Scrimshaw didn't get asked any questions, leaving a rather obvious gap in the "getting to know one another" portion of the show. On the up side, at the Jammin' Java show Molly put on her Eeyore outfit for this segment, and did the politest mike drop in history, which was incredibly adorable.

Sadly, like all shows, Nerd Night Out came to an end. On the upside, the show was closed out with a rousing rendition of Love You Like a Burrito performed by all four members of the tour, although Scrimshaw's contribution to the song was mostly humorous rather than strictly musical. At Jammin' Java, Storm joined the group for the final song as well, playing the keyboard cat. And with that, the show, and on September 15th the tour, was over. It was a great pair of shows, and I can't wait to see all of the performers again.

The Doubleclicks     Molly Lewis     Events     Home

No comments:

Post a Comment