Literati: A Comedy Show About Novels Never Written

By Andrew Andrews

Colin O’Brien and Michael Wolf introduce Literati: A Comedy Show About the Greatest American Novels Never Written, on stage at Union Hall in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

Literati is a stand-up comedy show. No, wait, it’s a reading series. No, wait, it’s both. No, wait—really, it’s a stand-up comedy show disguised as a reading series. Yes, that’s what it is.

Hosted by Colin O’Brien and Michael Wolf, this monthly event in Park Slope challenges comedians to assume the roles of fictional authors reading works of their own creation. Our hosts opened the show like a writer’s conference, promising examples of fine literature to help us break through our writer’s block and churn out the next great American novel.

Taylor Gonzalez started us off as literary curator William Herman Williams III, reading pages from lost scripts of Sex and the City that were discovered in the strangest of places. Next, 17-year-old Alex Song read from a picture book (without showing us the pictures!) titled My Favorite Part of..., expanding upon the theme by asking the audience for suggestions and improvising answers. Jason Gore followed as Denny Snood, reading from his upcoming book Blue Collar Comedian, Blue Collar Book—transcribed from dictation, interruptions included!

In our opinion, the proverbial best was saved for last when Chrissy Shackelford, as southern girl Jo-Jo Plunker, read from Wake Me Up Before You Jo-Jo, her memoir of growing up in Dixie, Alabama (“in Dixie, you do what the gremlins tell you to do!”) and moving to the big city.

There are plenty of comedy shows in New York City, and plenty of reading series, too. So, is Literati the perfect combination of the two? For ten bucks you can decide for yourself, next month at Union Hall, or listen to their podcast!


Andrew Andrews attended Literati: A Comedy Show About Novels Never Written at Union Hall in Brooklyn on Thursday, March 16, 2017 @ 8:00pm to write this review.