Approaching The Sun
Kyle Kinane flies high on debut full-length stand-up special
By Michael Shashoua / Jester editor-in-chief
Comedian Kyle Kinane, 35, has scored his first full-length special, “Whiskey Icarus,” released by Comedy Central on January 29 on CD and DVD after airing on the network in November. Kinane’s material is definitely fully formed and assured. Some of the subjects and tone are quite similar to contemporary Matt Braunger (see review, 7/8/12), although Kinane doesn’t aim for as much surrealism as Braunger.
Anyway, Kinane shows his mastery on a few of the pieces here (all the tracks are named after classic rock songs and themes like “Detroit Rock City,” “Beth” and “Flaming Youth,” rather than what they cover.
Kinane’s enthusiasm for “pho,” which is Vietnamese soup that he describes as “what happens when a former child soldier pours hot rainwater over fish nightmares – it’s delicious and I can’t stop eating it,” is delivered with that blustery Braunger tone. This is just one little instance though – where Kinane really entertains is when he stretches out at length.
That happens on an observational discourse about being on a flight next to someone who has chosen to bring a Foot Locker bag full of pancakes on as his snack. Kinane takes this everywhere it can go – to who this guy might be, how he got through security and how he ought to be acting with such a strange activity.
Another of Kinane’s great bits on “Whiskey Icarus” is also set on an airplane – what happens when he finds himself sitting next to a couple having sex under a blanket. Again, Kinane elevates the bit by musing on how the couple planned this, how he should react, and how this could be entertaining instead of unpleasant.
Kinane revels in a loser persona in his material, but his talent is clearly winning, and “Whiskey Icarus,” in any format, is well worth checking out.
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