Tulsa’s BOK Center played host to “some down home, sit on the back porch and tell a story, good time, southern fried comedy” on Friday the 13th as Larry the Cable Guy and his warm up act Reno Collier hit the stage with plenty of energy, hilarious stories and one-liners to a packed audience that had all walks of life in attendance. There were people there dressed to the nines, as well as, the Larry trademark sleeveless flannel shirts. It was a (pardon my political incorrectness) rednecks extravaganza. At one point while walking to my seat I overheard a well-dressed woman ask the man she was with, “do you have a bottle that I can spit into?” With that being said I knew that I was in for quite a night.
Reno Collier opened the show with his West Virginia brand of humor telling stories of his times as a P.E. teacher and run ins with parents. Like most comedians he spent a great deal of time speaking of his family and the oddball characters that made up his clan. Speaking of being Scottish as the reason for having a huge head. Stating that the Scots gave America two things liquor and golf. He did a fair job of getting the crowd going although some of his jokes were somewhat tasteless and borderline offensive to several cultures and orientations. Then again what did I really expect from a show of this caliber? Reno introduced Larry the Cable Guy who came onto the stage with his guitar and set it down, a prop that he never leaves offstage. If it wasn’t evident from the opener it became well known immediately with Larry that this was going to be a no holds barred politically incorrect evening that ranged from making jokes about different ethnicities to impairments.
Larry and I quite are a bit a like as we both seem to think of the human race as a big joke in itself. All of us deserve to have fun poked at us from time to time and need to be able to not take ourselves too seriously and laugh. From his opening comments this Cable Guy was on a roll, “Now is the time to go to Wal-Mart in Tulsa” and poking fun at common folk that were at his show instead of shopping at the retail outlet. Larry has great timing and incredible wit, he moves from one topic to another like a 6 year old with extreme ADD.
At times I was crying because I was laughing so hard and other times groaning from a low hit, which is where lots of his comedy takes place. From flatulence to phallic he hits on all cylinders.Of course there were the ever present Larryisms that will forever be a part of his stage show if not our culture “Git-R-Done”, “Lord forgive me and bless the starving pygmies in Africa”, and “That is funny I don’t care who you are.” He spoke of family and friends and mentioned his Blue Collar co-stars Jeff Foxworthy and Ron White and prodded jokes at them both.
Larry has quite a following here in Tulsa as it was on Z104.5 The Edge that he was introduced to the area with a daily phone bit during the evening drive. Tulsa was the third station to pick up this bit and Larry has never looked back appearing in TV shows and feature films such as Larry the Cable Guy, Health Inspector, Witless Protection, and Delta Farce, as well as, the afore mentioned Blue Collar Comedy shows. His brand of humor is something that is unique in that anyone can relate to it and find something funny. Larry is an everyman that is easily relatable. Most of the time you are laughing at it because it is either true of yourself or you know someone that he is speaking of. He may not be the poster child for the political correct agenda, but like him or hate him Larry the Cable Guy with make you laugh until you cry.
Of course no Larry show would be complete with him “singing some songs” with the guitar that he had brought out early that really just allows him to kick his ADD driven act into high gear, strumming a few licks, stopping to drop one-liners and the picking some more on the guitar. There were a few actual songs being done satirical and goofy but songs none-the-less. He closed the show with one of his new Christmas carols, a tune about his wife’s monthly cycle to the tune of “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow.” You can let your imagination take you where it will with that. He then pulled a great prank on the crowd by introducing a good friend of his offstage and trying to get him to come out, “Ladies and Gentlemen, Toby Keith!” People gasp and flashes went off, but to all of our surprise, of course no Toby Keith. To Larry the Cable Guy, well played sir, well played indeed.
Overall the audience at the BOK Center was treated to a night of sidesplitting comedy and a welcome break from the times we live in. We should all be so lucky to have that break on a regular basis.