TOM361When I told people I was going to see Tom Segura at Just for Laughs, I got one of two reactions:
1) Who’s that? or 2) Oh man that’s going to be awesome!

I chalk this up to the fact that Tom Segura is a professional comedian. Now, that might seem obvious to you since he’s presently on a stand-up tour across North America. But what I mean when I say Tom Segura is a professional comedian is that he isn’t very preoccupied with the other forms of entertainment that comedians often find themselves in.

If you’re a fan of stand-up comedy, you know he’s one of the current heavy hitters. If you’re a more casual fan of comedy you might not be as familiar with him.

He doesn’t have many scripted television show appearances (though that hasn’t stopped him from being booked on The Late Late Show, Conan and multiple stand up specials on Comedy Central). He doesn’t have a sprawling film career. He isn’t a member (that I know of) of a sketch troupe. Instead he’s out there doing what he is best at. Getting up on stage with a microphone and making all of us laugh.

And without a doubt that’s what he’s best at. Playing to venues the size of L’Olympia in Montreal is no easy feat, but Segura takes the stage and makes it look effortless. Check out either of his two Netflix specials “Completely Normal” and “Mostly Stories” and you’ll have a good idea of what I’m talking about.

His brand of humour straddles the line between laid back and in your face. Almost impossibly, he manages to be both of those things at the same time. Segura could easily be seen as offensive but his demeanour is so apologetic and easy going it takes the edge off some of his humour. In what was almost a callback to the classic George Carlin “7 Words You Can’t Say on TV”, Segura added a few words that are now “no words” in the PC era. Expresing a good deal of remorse for the fact that he could no longer use them in conversation. You could feel the audience tense as he walked casually around topics we’ve all been told are wrong. Part of me was thinking “oh right of course” but also “oh my God I can’t believe I just agreed with him.”

It’s a rare talent to evoke conflicting impulses simultaneously but it’s one that Segura seems to have mastered.

I don’t know whether it’s intentional or not, but from the outside looking in it certainly seems like Segura’s career mirrors his no-frills approach to comedy.

How many comedians can talk about considering a glory hole and killing an endangered bird within the same set and seem equally endearing throughout?

Opener: South African comedian David Kau opened up the evening a high energy set that revolved mostly around South African life and politics. Some of the punchlines were easy targets but Kau’s energy was still infectious.

Tom Segura’s latest tour “No Teeth, No Entry” continues throughout the year across the globe (show dates HERE) and Tom returns to JFL in Toronto for JFL 42 this September.

Keith does all sorts of things here on 9to5.cc, he works with the other founders on 9to5 (illustrated), co-hosts our two podcasts: The 9to5 Entertainment System and Go Plug Yourself and blogs here as The Perspicacious Geek.

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