Why is Helium Scared of Funny Women?

Comments

1
Women aren't funny. Christopher Hitchens sums it up very well in this article http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/features…

Anytime I see a female open mic'er it's always nothing but "ladies, guys always leave the seat up, am I right?!?!" It's just such bottom-of-the-barrel nonsense.
2
I know, right, I mean how can women possibly be funny when they're too busy bleeding all over the place and squeezing tiny people out of their baby-holes.
3
Why are unwashed masses so intimidated by my awesomeness?

But seriously, for every 20 amateur comedians - regardless of gender - that think they are funny only about five of them actually are. It is understandable that you root for team vagina, but when you champion every female "comic" regardless of their ability to actually be funny you do a disservice to the genuinely funny women comedians out there.
4
This is the THIRD IA in a row now that's centered around the word "vagina". What gives?
5
"People with boobs are funny"

For the most part, I disagree. Although I will concede that some people have funny boobs.

Who's the lady that hosted Talk Soup? She's funny.
6
^^"Vagina" is only mentioned once in the last three I,A's. The other two are pussy (as in the cat) and boobs (but balls are also mentioned in the same rant so they should cancel each other out). In case you were really more worried about the lack of attention being paid to male genitalia: penis, penis, balls, penis. Whew. It's all going to be okay now.
7
"Portland is a town that wants comedy"

No - Portland is a town where the majority of people going to comedy shows will never admit to anything being funny or cool. Really, I pity any comic trying to make a Portland crowd laugh. Especially a judgmental SE Portland crowd. Good luck.
8
I'll laugh when I hear something funny. The fact that I've paid good money to see bad local comedians numerous times is funny, just not in any entertaining way.

Actually I take that back. I saw a local guy at the Aladdin Theater who was so incredibly unfunny it became funny. And no, that was his gig, he actually thought he was being legitimately funny.
9
*wasn't his gig.
10
disastronaut, you paid good money to see an open mic? Are bars actually charging their customers to watch people practice? ouch!!
11
I've seen amy shumer there along with several featuring acts. They seem to have women headline several times a month even though there are fewer touring female comics than males. I think this person works at a competing comedy club and is just trying to stir up undeserved muck.
12
I agree. Get it together Portland comedy scene. Us funny ladies keep going to other states (Nevada) for work. Shame. Shame. Shame.
13
"Especially a judgmental SE Portland crowd."


I don't see what geographical location has to do with anything.
14
Lori Beth Denberg. She's funny too.
15
Hey you know what's funny? Comedy "Sportz"! It's just like standup, only better. Hey, did you know that I do Comedy "Sportz"? Crazy, right? This weekend, in fact! You should really come down and check it out, you'll love it. How many tickets can I put you down for? Six? Twelve? Hey what about your boyfriend and his coworkers and his family, do they love to laugh??? Hey--
16
froyo - you have clearly never been to a comedy show. Portland crowds are notoriously polite and eager to laugh.

As for the I,A - I've noticed Helium doesn't tend to have many female acts as well, especially the openers. While I (and certainly they) value funny over meeting quotas, it does seem difficult to believe they can't find more than two funny women in Portland over the course of the two or three years they've been open.

And I think Virginia Jones was the "punk" mentioned? I've seen her before and think I liked her, but it's been a while. Bridgetown looks to have a few more women coming, so hopefully the folks at Helium are paying attention.
17
You know, I'd never really experienced the "women aren't funny" mentality until I was in the midwest, where a dude attempted to hit on me by telling me "Wow, I never meet funny women! You're amazing!"

Nothing turns me on more than insulting my entire gender.
18
Portland crowds are great.

"Judgmental" SE Portland crowds are even better.

Portland has an outstanding comedy scene.

I'm not touching the female comedians at Helium thing with a ten foot pole.
19
Demographically, there are simply significantly less women comics in town. The amount of misogyny thrown around at every open mic does not help. Nor does the myth that women aren't funny. It can tend to be a boy's club, which is not okay. But this does mean the very dedicated women in Portland comedy are less susceptible to taking shit from others.

There are tons of funny women in Portland, and, yes, Helium isn't putting up a fair representation of them. I can't attest to this. I can only say that there's tons of great, hilarious women in this town who are not only great comics, but are also transcending the type of comedy expected from a female comic.

Whitney Streed runs the Weekly Recurring Humor Night at the Tonic Lounge, Belinda Carroll the Crush monthly showcase, Stacey Hallal owns and operates the Curious Comedy theater which in turn put together the all-female "All Jane No Dick" festival last year (and, based on its success in years to come). Marcia and Raishawn do a great job bringing standup to Backspace, and Raishawn is the mind behind No Pun Intendo at Ground Kontrol as well. Katie Brien and Crystal Kordowski put together the biweekly DTF show at Eastburn, and Iris Gorman and Christen Manville have teamed up to bring an excellent show to the Tardis Room at the end of every month. All these shows are presented by truly funny women, and put up funny women on the regular. There are shows run by men in town that also exercise a decent amount of equality. The best part of this list? I'm probably missing names.

So yes, we could always be better. But look past the club to find the funny women in town. They're there, and their mark is indelible.

And SE audiences are rad.
20
I'll touch it, Ian!

In the past, it seemed like Helium was trying to be more accommodating with their male/female ratio. This caused butt-hurtedness because in order for this to happen, the same females got to go up week after week. Now, even though it makes for less of a diverse lineup, females are getting on the list just as much as the rest of us poor, penis-ridden schlubs.
21
As a female comic who just moved here from San Francisco, I don't feel shunned by Helium and the crowds in Portland are great. If I DID for some reason feel like this post were true, I wouldn't stop trying to get work anyhow because I love doing comedy and it will always get you further to tune out assumptions about booking choices as you just try to get good and confident about performing. I think Helium's a lovely club with great crowds so far and this is not just me kissing up.

If you are angry with Helium about their booking choices, perhaps you'd be better off writing them a measured email and mentioning some lady comics around town you really love, LIKE ME AMY MILLER, instead of posting anonymously to the Mercury like a passo-aggro jerk. In fact, if you really dislike Helium so much and you want to see female comics perform in portland, maybe you could just support any number of fantastic shows happening around town every night that have very mixed lineups, many of which are hosted and run by women! LIKE the following shows with ME, AMY MILLER.

TONIGHT! At Funhouse Lounge with Dave Hill. Ten bucks! 8pm!
Tomorrow at Fly Ass Jokes at The Brody Theater 10pm!
Next Thursday 3/28 with Ron Funches and Anthony Lopez. TWO SHOWS at Mississippi Studios!
22
What's-her-name is right, guys.
23
Typical man: trying to come to a lady's rescue, even when it wasn't wanted and isn't appropriate. I'm going to go over here and write jokes and prep for Bridgetown Comedy Festival.
24
By "over here," you mean the kitchen, right?
25
you make the darn cutest troll! who can stay mad at you!?
26
Yeah, I agree with Dave Hill.
27
Aestro -- Virginia Jones (the 'punky one' who is great though more gothy really) moved to L.A., which is why she doesn't work at Helium these days.

Whoever wrote this apparently doesn't know that a woman books the openers and open mic at Helium.
28
I like Helium & appreciate everything the club has done for Portland's thriving comedy community & audiences. I do agree there should be more women everywhere: in comedy, government, literature, industrial kitchens, the bus, my room, places of business, places of leisure, rap, punk, the internet, college, public parks, private golf courses, museums, forests, bodies of water, outer space, submarines, etc. Whoever wrote the original post seems to have misdirected their anger at a singular venue rather than just be mad at the whole world in general. Life is really so unfair.
29
Amy proves my point: that you can't be a comic without being obnoxiously self-promoting.

Man, woman, whatever. Obnoxious.

Now please, buy these Comedy "Sportz" tickets before I have to incorporate this bit into my next standup act.
30
I'm dying to know who the poster of this is, and who BarfPendergrass is... and i never ever thought i'd need to write that sentence...
31
Went to bob saget last thursday at the Helium. He was great, the feature act was decent although a bit too focused on his phone which he was using like a watch. The host was a woman though and she was amazingly unfunny. I hope that the helium isn't just letting horrendous female comics up on stage to try to "balance" things out.