“I need two people to come up here and chug some ranch! We’re about to have a good old fashion Texas ranch off!” yelled Eric Andre as audience members ran toward the stage at Cullen Performance Hall on the University of Houston campus.
A group of about ten rushed their way up to Andre who stood on the stage flanked by a trash can and two bottles of ranch dressing sitting on a stool. As stagehands tried to narrow the group down to two, one of the volunteers produced his own bottle of the creamy salad topping.
“He can stay…he brought his own,” laughed the comedian to a roar of applause.
Eric Andre, the host of Adult Swim’s public access talk show spoof, The Eric Andre Show, brought his Legalize Everything Tour to a packed house Saturday night. Students and fans of the Cartoon Network comedian filled the lower level and balcony as Andre quipped about everything from the Trump presidency, his experience with acid, and Calvinism. Some might underestimate Andre because of viral prank clips from his show and assume he’s all slapstick and dick jokes but his show is much more than that. His stand-up is a well thought out critique of authority, religious or governmental — along with slapstick and dick jokes.
The comedian is also great at working the crowd and deviating from the script, an aspect enhanced by the intimacy produced by Cullen Performance Hall. Andre spent a lot of time working directly with the audience, talking with one member about seeing his parents have sex for the first time and even abruptly stopping the show to roast three women trying to sneak to the restroom.
“Shine the light on them!” yelled Andre as laughed and rushed into the audience. “I’m up here on stage giving my blood, sweat, and tears and your trying to go to the bathroom. All three of you don’t have to go. C’mon…all three?”
At one point Andre even invited people up to the stage so that he could text their mothers random messages. The hall filled with laughter as the faces of confused parents talking to Eric Andre were projected on the screen behind him.
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For those looking for more from Andre, a man who gained a following with his original Adult Swim show whose fourth season ended in 2016, he also announced the fifth season of the show was in production and a Netflix special was on the way. He even gave the audience a preview of his new movie, Bad Trip, which features Lil Rel Howery and Tiffany Haddish. The two starred together on The Carmichael Show, have since propelled into stardom in movies like Get Out and Night School, and worked with Andre to produce a prank style movie much in the vein of his TV show.
“We’re essentially doing a black Jackass…black ass,” laughed Andre as he introduced a scene involving himself, Howery, and a Japanese finger trap.
Eric Andre might be about pranks and slapstick but his show in Houston Saturday night proved he has the comedic edge to keep an audience in stitches.