Bob Saget + bad words = not funny

Banking on nostalgia and irony, Saget’s sophomoric stand-up killed at the State Theater.

Jay Boller

In case you haven’t heard, Bob Saget (TV’s Danny Tanner) swears and talks about having sex with things these days. If that was news to you, you’ll have ’til the end of this paragraph to process the shock value/irony involved with the situation. One Ö two Ö three Ö OK.

Alright. Pretty outrageous, no? “Full House’s” wholesome clean-freak dad is now an edgy and inappropriate bastion of bad taste. Problem is, without any actual substance to back up the cuss-fest that is his live show, the 10 seconds of “Wow! Danny Tanner swears, now?” that you may have felt while finishing the above paragraph is about all it’s worth. This past Friday, the elongated “Seven Words” George Carlin bit that is Saget’s stand-up routine stopped by the State Theater and was actually very well received. If this proves anything, it’s that:

A. Saget knows how to market himself, and;

B. Most people are idiots.

Post-“Full House”/”America’s Funniest Home Video” Bob Saget has been a genius marketing move. Essentially, the Bob Saget market – anyone born 1980 to 1990 – has been pandered to and milked for countless dollars by the mastermind that is Saget and/or Saget handlers.

First, there was non-threatening family-friendly Bob. This Bob warmedour hearts and tickled our easily tickled youthful funnybones as Danny Tanner (Full House) and the host who made goofy sound effects (America’s Funniest) as folks got struck with things in the nuts on tape. But as the century turned, Saget became aware of his aging audience and adopted a new persona they could relate to: someone who isn’t asexual and who doesn’t talk like a PTA member.

Saget 2.0 made himself known in various raunchy cameos – “Half Baked” (oral sex/cocaine), “The Aristocrats” (incest) and “Entourage” (prostitutes) – and, in turn, struck a chord with kids who grew up on Saget and had since learned the concept of irony and the hilarity of sex. Today, Sag 2.0 is touring the country and plucking $35 a ticket from thousands of young Sagitons who either remain entranced by the irony of contemporary Bob or are just too drunk to realize that he is not very funny.

Anyone who owns a copy of Blink-182’s live album “The Mark, Tom and Travis Show” or attended a Blink concert has a pretty solid idea of what Saget-Noir comedy is all about. Take the Blink show, subtract all the non-joke songs, increase the banter tenfold and meld the bodies/6th grade potty-humor of the band into one man, and you have new millennium Saget. A stylistic shift would mean little without an accompanying aesthetic shift so, on stage, Saget can be found wearing Chuck Taylors with a sport coat cause, ya know, he’s hip and edgy like that. Also, expect the word “dude” to come from his 51-year-old lips a desperately-clinging-to-youth number of times. As for the show, it’s delivered at a frenzied pace and the jokes are not delivered in standard pre-determined sort of way. Whatever the amount of scripting in his set, the jokes appear to be of the on-the-fly improv sort. It’s all topped off with a Steven Lynch/Adam Sandler-esque set of acoustic joke songs and a (presumably) handsome profit for Bob.

Saget’s set on Friday covered few specifics. There was little observational comedy and the jokes mainly related to Saget’s various career stages. The obvious culprits of Full House and AFHV were covered and all of the above later-career ventures were mentioned.

Spoiler alert! Here’s an abridged version of Saget’s set

Full House: Three men in a house together? Gay alert! One time, a donkey s–t on the floor during filming and it was gross. Poop=funny!

America’s Funniest Home Videos: Sometimes people sent in filthy videos! I watched them.

Half Baked: Remember my scene in “Half Baked?” That was funny, right?

The Aristocrats: You guys saw that, too? I’m edgy, by the way.

Basically, Saget put a vulgar spin on the clean shows he did and reminded people of/repeated punch lines from the dirtier things he’s done. That’s not to say the entire show was un-funny. There was one killer reference to having received oral relations from Kimmy Gibbler on the set of “Full House” and a couple other funny-nuggets. But other than a commentary on his own career, the show consisted of some trying-too-hard audience interactions, dated cultural references (Lord of the Rings, The Matrix, Harry Potter) and constant reminders that he was once perceived as wholesome.

To top off a night of locker room humor, one of the final acoustic joke songs was about a dog licking its owner’s testicles. Not to drive the Blink-182 humor comparison into the ground, but a hidden acoustic track off their 2003 release “Take off your Pants and Jacket” was actually titled “F–k a Dog in the Ass”. Well, at least he’s a surprisingly capable guitarist.

In our capitalist economy, the market dictates everything. Judging by the near capacity crowd at the State Theater, the market has decided that Bob Saget’s stand-up is funny. This fact discredits comedy, but it is also kudos to the self-marketing of Bob Saget. For now, the world can expect Saget’s tour to keep chugging across the country, spewing diarrhea jokes and listing irreverent things one could copulate with the entire way. Perhaps in another twenty years, Saget will adopt a Red Green style of old-guy comedy as his audience creeps closer to the grave. Until then, poop pee sex Full House bad word LOL.