BIG ED BARNHAM is back! Portland's self-proclaimed (and uncontested) "leading provider of ceramic demi-humans, lawn jockeys, wrought-iron yard sculpture, glittering orbs, moonshine, and tax advice" is back with another season of the web series, Big Ed Barnham's One of a Kind Big Find of the Week. The videos will air over the course of 15 weeks, with a premiere party on Wednesday, March 18, at Kickstand Comedy Space.
Big Ed Barnham is an alter ego of local comedian Scott Rogers. The videos are sort of Antiques Roadshow meets Hee Haw meets the glory days of comedy open mic at Suki's. They're short, snappy, weird, and fun, as Big Ed describes and tries to sell his exquisite finds from rummage and estate sales while he navigates the bumps and hiccups of everyday life. Rogers plays Ed with a folksy deadpan that nails rural America; his understanding and affection make the character absolutely compelling. Rogers himself is from small-town Kentucky, but Big Ed could just as easily be selling his wares from an old barn in any small town across the country. If you missed the first season (a lot of us did; it wasn't heavily promoted), you can catch up at bigedbarnham.com.
One of a Kind Big Find of the Week came about, says Rogers, when he was doing character-based stand-up and thinking about episodic storytelling. Big Ed was a character he'd been working on, and he'd built his Big Ed material into a longer set. Then, Rogers says, "I was stumbling around Rerun, the vintage store in Northeast Portland, and ran across two wooden figures. I immediately knew what their story was, so I spent $8 to buy them and wrote the first episode in my car before leaving the parking lot."
At the Kickstand show, Rogers will premiere the new episode, along with the most-viewed episode of last season, host a pickled egg-eating contest, and give away canned hams; other local stand-ups who appear in the series will also perform. In season two, Big Ed continues to sell his oddball finds, but he'll be joined by guests along the way: Look out for Holly Wigmore as Ed's wife, Summer America Barnham; comedian Phil Schallberger reprising his role as a country doctor of questionable Swiss descent; and comedian Christian Ricketts, as a cowboy poet/pig dairy farmer. There's always another find next week!