We’ve reached a point in show business where the name “Louis C.K.” is synonymous with comedy, and for good reason. Louis C.K. is easily one of the funniest men alive right now, but that title hasn’t stopped him from getting funnier and setting the bar of comedy even higher. On the evening of September 28, Louis C.K. performed an hour-long set of new material at the Sony Centre to close off this year’s Just for Laughs Festival.
A Canadian and self-described “man-mountain of comedy”, K. Trevor Wilson had a tall order opening for Louis C.K., but he held his own. His set was brief, but it was tight and filled with thoughtfully placed jokes and punch lines that kept the audience laughing from start to finish.
Reaching the top, especially in show business, usually marks the end of a career. The only logical place to go next is down, right? Not always. Not only is Louis C.K. enjoying his view from the top, he’s redefining what it means to be at the top. During his hour-long set, he told his anecdotes and stories with surgical precision, choosing each word and beat as though he were playing a symphony. Louis C.K.’s comedy has a melody and a rhythm to it that is both enthralling and admirable.
The set’s jokes strayed from the familiar topic of his daughters, and it was brutally honest, genuinely moving, and deeply philosophical. The comedian rather boldly tackled subjects such as body image, aging, and even the meaning of life.
Louis C.K. has turned his comedy into an art, and it’s one that plays with the audience’s emotions and expectations. He leads you in one direction and delivers the finishing punch out of left field. His jokes are the comedic equivalent of TKOs.
After his first set, he received a standing ovation and returned to the stage a few minutes afterwards for an encore. Unlike his typical encores, in which he jumps from story to story, this encore was conceptual and lasted 10 minutes. To avoid spoiling anything for the yet-to-be-confirmed comedy special he’ll hopefully release in the future, the reactions to his encore could be summed up in two sentiments: “I can’t believe I’m laughing this hard at something like this” with a dash of “this is so morally awful and wrong but so, so, so funny”. It was a perfect bit.
C.K. received a second, even more thunderous standing ovation when he closed the show for the evening—an ovation he had completely earned.