It's sooooo hard to explain to anyone who isn't a part of the LA comedy scene, and especially who isn't part of The Comedy Store family (or "clique" is probably what you call if you aren't a part of it) about the development culture and the weight of Getting Passed.
For as long as I can remember the old showcase system was gone and it was all nebulous promises, whispers and intimations from Tommy. But there's a new sheriff in town and, after bringing in a few headliners who ought to be able to walk onstage at any club in the country, Adam Eget got down to business moving some of the "Friends & Family" up the ranks to paid spots.
The first showcase featured Earl Skakel, Sandro Iocalano, Candice Thompson, Kyle Ray and Jeremiah Watkins, with Candice and Earl ultimately getting the bump. And It's about time! All of these folks are tremendously talented comedians, and they each bring a unique style and voice to the table. But among them (and the wider pool of potentials), Earl and Candice are by far the most polished and experienced and most likely to fall into the "Why the hell aren't you passed already???" box.
And thank god one of them was a woman! The Store has a real girl problem and I could write an essay on how it got that way, but that's not what we're here for today. Anyway, the number of female Paid Regulars is embarrassingly low, and now that Whitney Cummings, Fortune Feimster and Leslie Jones are busier with TV and touring, it's a pitiful number of women to choose from for any given night's lineup.
And thank god that woman was Candice Thompson! While there are plenty of women from outside the system (like Beth Stelling and Jackie Kashian) who should be on the OR stage, Candice is consistently one of the best performers on Potluck of any gender and it's a testament to the ongoing commitment to comedic development that this first round is all "promoted from within" (PS Ebes already added Jake Weisman & Marcella Arguello to the roster of unpaid regulars known as Friends & Family). Candice was the first name off my lips any time anyone bothered to ask my opinion about which F&F of the XX persuasion were ready to get passed. She's just fucking hilarious.
And Earl. Earl!!! Earl's got the curse of being a "comic's comic" - frequently cited by everyone else as one of the funniest guys they know, sought after to be booked on shows everywhere else in town, just sort of neglected "Well, Earl will always be around" at his home club. But he made his presence felt, regardless, with major contributions to both the Barris/Kennedy + Overdrive and Roast Battle.
So, now that I've gushed on the newest members of the [$25 club] [CORRECTION: The $15 club, I've been in NYC so long I forgot how shitty LA pay is - when will you all just move here???], here's the word on how that impacts the fantasy league:
For scoring, This counts as "First" for both Earl and Candice, so with 3 points each, tied for the lead are:
Ari Mannis @arimannis
Kimberly Congdon @kimberlycongdon
Jeremy Paul @jeremypaulsays
Aaron Mceachern @aaronmceachern
Jen Moore @absolut420jen