Show Tell Show
By Andrew Andrews
When we first caught the Show Tell Show a few years ago at (the now defunct) Over the Eight, we were disappointed that there weren’t many contestants in the show-and-tell portion. Of course, this is first and foremost a stand-up comedy show, but it’s the invitation for audience members to show an object and tell a story about it—yes, just like back in grade school—that makes this concept interesting. Which is not to say that we never saw any good comedians or any worthwhile presenters at Over the Eight—one that particularly stands out was a woman that stepped into and inflated a giant balloon around herself—but the imbalance between comedy and contest didn’t exactly beckon us back to Williamsburg very often.
It’s been said that when an old door closes, a new one opens, and that seems to be the case now that Show Tell Show has found a new home at the recently-opened House of Wax Museum & Cocktail Bar inside the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Downtown Brooklyn. Now, as you might guess from the types of events that our reviews skew towards, a mainstream chain does not rank highly on our choice of venue. However, the House of Wax is one very interesting establishment, with “Anatomical, Pathological & Ethnographic Waxworks from Castan’s Panopticum, Berlin, 1869–1922” on display in cases lining nearly every inch of every wall; it’s a lot like what the (also now defunct) Morbid Anatomy Museum could have been with the major capital of a national cinema chain behind them. The beer and wine selection is pretty extensive, the cocktails are mixologist-quality and prices are about where you’d expect them to be (neither a great deal nor a total rip-off).
As for the show itself, well, it seems to be off to an excellent (re-)start. Five contestants vied for the prize of $20 plus free drink tickets, scattered between sets by hosts Lukas Kaiser and Jeff Simmermon, plus Niles Turner, Brandon Scott Wolf and two of our favorite New York City comedians, Aparna Nancherla and Dave Hill. That’s the most competition we’ve ever seen at this event, and hopefully a trend toward greater audience participation at the new venue. So what did people show? There was a spent firework recovered after an emergency pee in a dark Coney Island alley, an autographed head shot of Johnny “The Goombah” Rocco, a necklace from Zimbabwe, Pop-Tarts from a 7-Eleven in Florida, and the winning entry: a phone containing MP3s of Journey’s greatest hits that remind the owner why his parents got divorced.
Think you have something better to show and talk about for a chance to win twenty bucks and some free booze? Then check in with Kaiser (vice-principal of the NYC comedy scene) at the start of the next Show Tell Show!
Andrew Andrews attended Show Tell Show at Alamo Drafthouse in Brooklyn on Wednesday, February 8, 2017 @ 8:00pm to write this review.