Marc Maron is widely known in the stand-up community. He’s a comedian’s comedian. If he wasn’t, he wouldn’t be able to sustain his podcast WTF with Marc Maron, in which all he really does is interview and chat with fellow comics. There’s just something about him that comedians get, but most listeners probably won’t. His 2011 release This Has To Be Funny is the comic’s fourth CD and first on Comedy Central Records mp3 album at Amazon
Maron is a very deliberate comedian. He won’t rush through any joke just to get to the punch line. His jokes are a journey from beginning to end. While there’s nothing wrong with this, many listeners, especially younger ones, won’t have the patience for him. Are the jokes funny? Most of the time. Do you have to wait for them? Almost always. If you like a more constant barrage of jokes akin to Daniel Tosh or Jim Gaffigan then Maron probably isn’t right for you.
He also has a very dark sense of humor. This stand-up comedy CD is filled with jokes dealing with depression and misery with very sarcastic undertones. These jokes are generally funny, but only if you are a fan of that type of humor. If not, you may want to steer clear of This Has To Be Funny.
This album starts off relatively strong, particularly the tracks Cat Guy and “I Didn’t Know How To Love You”, that deal with the mess that is his parents. These are both very funny tracks but they are the only truly quality tracks from beginning to end. Once you get to the Texting While Driving track, the jokes start to go downhill. There are still several laugh out loud lines from this point on but between these points, the listener has to be very patient, and it’s generally not worth the wait. Tracks like Working Out Their Daddy Issues and A Situation in My Head deal with longer stories with no real driving purpose, other than having a few amusing thoughts sprinkled here and there. They sound like personal stories Maron convinced himself could get laughs due to their pure absurdity.
It basically comes down to what you’re looking for in comedy. If you enjoy laughing at misery a la Richard Lewis, then you’ll probably really enjoy Marc Maron. If not, this will probably be a mostly boring album.
Other Marc Maron Reviews
Not Sold Out: Definitely different, dark, smart, edgy comedy CD
Tickets Still Available: there is such a thing as nihilist stand-up comedy and this guy is its poster boy.
Final Engagement: Are you afraid of the dark? This comic certainly is not.
This Has To Be Funny: Excellent comedy CD and Maron s first on Comedy Central Records
Thinky Pain: Maron is a master storyteller and only seems to get better as time goes by. Highly recommended.