Impractical Jokers is one of my all-time favourite TV shows. I don’t mean to be that kind of person but it’s been the light through some of my darkest days, and it never fails to make me smile. Not only are they hilariously funny, but they all seem so down to earth and so genuine, I would literally watch anything they do. (And let’s not forget that they’re rather easy on the eyes). There are loads of their early improv sketches available to view on Youtube from before Impractical Jokers existed, and it reminds me of a modern day Monty Python.
This autumn they brought their “Where’s Larry?” tour to the UK, following their “Santiago Sent Us” tour at the beginning of this year (I was lucky enough to be at their very first show at the 02 in January – such a special night). There’s not many people I’d put on a bra and leave the house for, but when their tickets went on sale I knew I needed to go. Before I’d seen them I had no idea what to expect, as the whole premise of their show is interacting with people who don’t know who they are, so how are they going to do that with an arena full of people who do know them?
The answer is simple. The live show isn’t the same as the TV show. And honestly, I prefer that. I wouldn’t want to pay money to go to a live show and see exactly the same as what I can see on TV. I love that they do something different. There’s so much love, happiness and excitement at their live shows, and it feels like they’re coming on stage to hang out with 5000 of their friends.
Part of the magic of everything they do are the guys themselves. They’ve been best friends for over 25 years and that really comes across on TV and in the live show, because they know what makes each other tick and they know how to get the best response from the other three guys. They have so much charm and charisma it’s hard not to have the biggest smile on my face when I watch them perform.
On this tour they were supported by another stand up comedian called Steve Byrne, who you may know from Sullivan & Son. He was so funny and he got everyone involved, and at the end of his set we were all dancing and singing to Mr Brightside while he went through the crowd and partied with everyone. During that the Jokers actually ran on stage and into the crowd and joined the party, and everyone completely lost their shit. He was great, had me laughing the entire time, and I’d definitely go and see him again if he came back to the UK.
Onto the main show itself, it had a similar format to the Santiago tour but all the material was different. They’re all on stage at the same time, telling jokes and funny stories about their lives and the show, and there’s a lot of audience participation too – they actually took someones phone and sent an embarrassing message to one of their contacts (similar to the ‘Send to All’ game that Michael McIntyre does). They also play unseen sketches and challenges from the show, as well as some private videos that they’ve taken when they mess with each other in ‘real life’ as opposed to doing so for the show. One of the sketches they played had me far more aroused than I probably should be – if you’ve seen their show you’ll know which one I mean. By the end of the night my face was hurting from laughing so much, the only thing I could fault about it is that is wasn’t long enough. We had a flat tyre on the way there, and because of family commitments in the middle of the country we ended up doing about 5 and a half hours of driving that day, but the guys made it totally worth it.
I’m not sure when they will be coming back to the UK after this tour, but if you get a chance you have to go and see them. I only wish I’d stayed around afterwards, as sometimes a couple of them come outside afterwards to talk to people and take photos, so naturally I’m incredibly jealous of anyone who got to meet them when I missed my chance! If I ever did meet them, I like to think I’d be all charismatic and charming, but in reality I’d probably get so hot and flustered I’d end up saying something stupid that’d make me sound like a right bellend. I mean, it’s not like I could be like “Oh hi Sal, my names Kimberley and we’ve never met but I’d quite like to sit on your face” right?
I’m gonna end this with a clip of one of my favourite punishments, purely because my favourite one-liner of all time came from this punishment. Enjoy.
“It’s pregnant right? ‘Cause if I’m just fisting a cow that’s fucked up”.