By Elizabeth Zakaim
Arts & Entertainment Editor
Although students came to the College Union Board’s Fall Comedy Show to hear comedian and talk-show host Chris Hardwick perform stand-up, it was Hardwick’s musical finale that really won over the Kendall Hall crowd.
Hardwick closed his show with Mike Phirman, the opening act and longtime co-performer, to sing their original song, “Corazon,” in a tribute to the romantic nature of Latino music, with a more literal twist on the heart.
The lyrics, sung in Spanish, were translated on a slideshow behind the two performers that also included anatomical images of the heart and other videos of heart dissections.
“The human heart is a hollow, four-chambered organ. The heart is a muscular pump that maintains the circulation of our life’s blood,” the translation read as the duo sang in Spanish.
Hardwick treated the audience with lively anecdotes and raunchy jokes at his show on Tuesday, Nov. 7.
The comedian endeared himself to the crowd with personal stories. One time, while vacationing with his wife, a romantic moment took an unexpected turn.
“Give me your finger,” his wife, Lydia Hearst said.
Hardwick thought he’d hit the jackpot, until he learned exactly just where his finger was going to go.
“I have sunscreen on my hands. Could you put my contact lens in for me?”
That was the first time Hardwick had touched his wife’s, or anyone’s, eyeball, and he hoped it would be the last.
While he never ran short of any jokes or laughs, Hardwick’s career ranges further than his stand-up. He is the founder and CEO of Nerdist, a media empire that includes a website, podcast and various YouTube channels. He is also known for hosting the Emmy-winning internet-based game show “@midnight.” Hardwick continues to host “Talking Dead,” the aftershow of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” and its spinoff “Fear the Walking Dead.”
Hardwick showed off his improv skills by interacting directly with the audience. He approached one audience member who Hardwick claimed was wearing “sports shorts,” attire that ran contra to his proud nerdy persona.
“So what sports thing do you do,” he asked Jesse Peterson, a senior health and exercise science major, glad to have an athlete in his comedic clutches.
“Your mom,” Peterson answered without missing a beat.
“That does explain why she’s been so thoroughly unsatisfied lately,” Hardwick replied.
The raunchy jokes, a trademark of Hardwick’s self-described “juvenile humor” only got more vulgar as the night went on.
Hardwick asked Dylan Broadwell, a junior psychology major, why –– from a psychological perspective –– Peterson would brag about showing off his supposed sexual relations with Hardwick’s mother.
“What would you say about that sports kid,” he asked Broadwell.
“He has a tiny penis,” Broadwell replied.
Neither Peterson nor Broadwell planned for their interactions with the comedian, but it had the audience hooting and laughing.
Hardwick also had a great time playing around with the props backstage and infusing them into his comedic bits. He accompanied a pot he threw from backstage with the cheesy pun –– “I didn’t know pot was legal here.”
He also shared his advice on everything from self-driving cars to dancing in public.
“It’s an exceptionally bad idea,” he said on cars that could be programmed to drive themselves, except for one unexpected feature, “you can jerk off in traffic.”
Hardwick found the shyness he’s always felt while dancing in public withered away when he found the key to the ultimate dance move.
“Just pretend that you’re surrounded by thousands of penises,” he said, swinging his fists up and down continuously to an imaginary beat.
Hardwick and Phirman’s finale, “Corazon,” was the perfect closing to an eccentric and interactive performance.
The audience loved the show as well. For Broadwell, a long-time fan of Hardwick, Broadwell’s chance to exchange banter with the comedian was the highlight of the show –– that, and the chance for Broadwell to mention that Hardwick’s mom follows Broadwell on Twitter.
“That was my main goal for tonight,” Broadwell said. “It was incredible.”