The Funniest Videos From the Polar Vortex

Screening Room Arctic Blast

While we certainly haven’t had it as bad as our friends up east, we’ve had our share of cold weather right here in Austin. In fact the so-called “Polar Vortex” has affected most states, sending many inside to binge watch Netflix and order in food. While it’s been a bummer for some, it hasn’t all been bad. It seems like everyone from Jon Stewart to a greyhound in a onesie has starred in a funny video involving the cold winter blast. Here now are the best videos to come out of the Polar Vortex!

Stephen Colbert winterized his studio.

A Corgi did a belly flop in the snow.

Jon Stewart took on the climate change deniers.

This man invited a herd of deer over for breakfast.

Cousin Sal threw snowballs at people on an LA beach.

A greyhound ran around in a Batman onesie.

And this kid jumped on an icy trampoline.

Brrr! That’s all for now. Stay tuned to for some exciting Moontower announcements later this month!

The Best Christmas Specials You’ve Never Seen

Screening Room ChristmasHo ho ho! I’ve been combing the internet looking for what I consider to be the best overlooked Christmas specials of the past 30 years. While I couldn’t find absolutely everything, I was very happy with what I turned up. This assembly of programs deconstruct the traditional holiday special in hilarious and inventive ways. Collectively they are hosted by a Late Night icon, an insult comic dog, a Kid in the Hall, two lunatics, a drunk, and Pee-Wee Herman! Here now, are some of my favorite, oft-forgotten Christmas specials. Happy Holidays!


Christmas with the Lettermans • Late Night with David Letterman
A one-hour send-up of countless corny Christmas specials featuring Letterman’s pretend family and memorable numbers like “Smells Like Christmas Time”.


The Triumph Family Christmas Special • Late Night with Conan O’Brien
The insult comic dog hosted a mini special on Late Night with Conan O’Brien in 1998 where we meet his uncooperative son and his poodle mistress. Featuring an appearance from Triumph’s College All-American Football Team


Pee-Wee’s Playhouse Christmas Special • Pee-Wee’s Playhouse
This 1988 special features appearances from Little Richard, Magic Johnson, Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello, Charo, k.d. lang, and Dinah Shore. Pee-Wee pokes gentle fun at the holiday special while maintaining a genuine sweetness.


Dave Foley’s The True Meaning of Christmas Specials • CBC Television Special
Considered by many to be the holy grail of Christmas specials as it was once very difficult to find. This 2002 CBC special is hosted by Kids in The Hall and NewRadio’s Dave Foley and features a long list of celebrity guests including Dick Dale, Joe Flaherty, Tom Green, Mike Myers, Andy Richter, Jason Priestly, and Dave Thomas.


Kenny vs. Spenny’s Christmas Special
This freewheeling Christmas special was also the series finale for the popular Canadian show. For the uninitiated, two friends named Kenny and Spenny dedicate each episode of their quasi reality show to a series of competitions. The loser typically performs some act of humiliation of the loser’s choosing. In this episode, Kenny and Spenny compete to see who can create the best Christmas themed variety show.

Drunk History Christmas • Drunk History
In this special edition of Derek Waters’ Drunk History, Allan McLeod drinks a bottle of whiskey and recites a famous Christmas poem. Jim Carrey, Ryan Gosling, and Eva Mendes perform the reenactment.

Top 10 Nick Kroll Characters of All Time

Nick Kroll

Is there anyone working today who is better at doing characters than Nick Kroll? Key and Peele, Paul F. Tompkins, and Andy Daly certainly give him a run for his money, but no one has captured the public imagination in the way that Kick Kroll has through his work on Comedy Bang Bang, Funny or Die, and the wildly popular Kroll Show. Nick performs at the Paramount Theatre tonight at 7pm and at least a handful of 2 for 1 balcony tickets are still available. Grab your tickets and check out my completely biased ranking of the top 10 Nick Kroll characters of all time!


10. C-Czar

9. Chance the Slam Poet

8. Dr. Armond

7. Liz from PubLIZity

6. Aspen Bruckenheimer

5. Spotted Ox Hostel Guy

4. Fabrice Fabrice

3. Gil Faizon

2. Bobby Bottleservice

1. El Chupacabra


Nick Kroll performs at the Paramount Theatre tonight at 7pm.  2 for 1 balcony tickets are on sale now. (Discount automatically taken at checkout when purchasing 2 tickets). Tickets.

Whitney Cummings: Backstage at the Paramount

Whitney Cummings

Welcome to the first in a series of exclusive backstage interviews with performers at select Moontower Comedy special events! We’re kicking off this series with a bang: the inimitable Whitney Cummings joined us in the bowels of the Paramount Theatre to talk about her misadventures in Austin, her career as a professional roaster, and her early days as a Punk’d performer. Take a look!

Moontower Special

Screening Room: Special Take-a-break-from-your-family-and-go-in-the-other-room-and-watch-videos Edition

Screening Room ThanksgivingIt’s that time of year again! The Thanksgiving time! Where you get to be with your whole weird family! Or someone else’s weird family! Or you hang out with your weird friends and everyone brings some weird dish and it’s like a weird potluck! Any way you slice it, it will definitely be exhausting! So why not take a break and go into the other room and watch some hilarious Thanksgiving videos on your computer? Tell everyone you have to write a work email or something. They’ll think you’re important. Anyway, here are a couple of new gems from Funny or Die and some old favorites. Happy Thanksgiving!


Thanksgivukkah – Nick Kroll

It’s Thanksgiving Time – Saturday Night Live


Thanksgiving 1621 – Stella


Thanksgiving Breakdown – Kids in the Hall


The Thanksgiving Channel – Missi Pyle and David Neher

Whitney is Cummings to the Paramount on Saturday Night

Whitney Cummings

Shortly after moving to Los Angeles, Whitney Cummings was discovered by Ashton Kutcher. She soon found herself on Punk’d hoodwinking stars like Julia Stiles, Adam Brody, Vivica Fox, and The Rock. A few years, celebrity roasts, and television shows later, she’s become a bit of a household name herself, and with good reason – she’s incredibly funny.

This Saturday night at the Paramount Theatre, the creator and star of the NBC sitcom Whitney will bring her celebrated wit to Austin for one evening only. If you don’t know her work, I’ve attached a clip of her comedy below as well as a hilarious NSFW snippet from the David Hasselhoff roast on Comedy Central. Tickets 

Upright Citizens Brigade Touring Company Brings All Stars of Improv to Austin


If you’re like me, you’ve probably been dragged to a bad improv show at some point in your life. When it’s not working, improv can be self-indulgent, nonsensical, and, worst of all, boring. One bad show can make you want to give up on improv all together. Don’t.

Instead, check out the Upright Citizen’s Brigade’s Touring Company at the Stateside at the Paramount this week. The company is made up of the very best and brightest stars of the prestigious Upright Citizens Brigade theaters in LA and New York. These guys have been in the trenches and have risen in the ranks at their respective theaters. The company promises six wholly original and completely different shows!

The UCB was founded by Amy Poehler, Matt Besser, Ian Roberts and Matt Walsh and has nurtured performers like Ed Helms, Jack McBrayer, Ellie Kemper and more. Come and meet the comedy stars of tomorrow and watch a new generation of improvisors at the top of their game.

The Upright Citizen’s Brigade Touring Company will be at the Stateside at the Paramount Theatre Wednesday November 20th – Saturday November 23rd. Shows are at 8pm on Wednesday and Thursday, and at 7pm and 9:30pm on Friday and Saturday. Click here for tickets and more information.

Screening Room – Last Call for Conan!

20 Years of ConanToday is your LAST CHANCE to check out highlights from 20 Years of Conan! Look back at some of the show’s best guests, characters, comedy sketches, and more! Take a look at all of the clips here and check out my top three:


3. Clive Clemmons Inappropriate Response Channel

2. Andy’s Little Sister

1. Triumph Torments Nerds In Line For “Star Wars: Episode I”

The Daily Show and Friends Take Over the Paramount Friday

Daily Show

Daily Show correspondent Al Madrigal, “Resident Expert” John Hodgman, and former showrunner, executive producer, and writer Rory Albanese descend upon the Paramount Theatre in Austin tomorrow night for an evening of standup, video clips, audience participation, and a look behind-the-scenes at one of the greatest television shows of the past decade! There are still a few seats left for this one night only event that promises to entertain.

I was lucky enough to catch Mr. Madrigal when the Funny or Die Oddball tour came through town this summer and he was one of the show’s highlights. Hodgman likewise stole the show with his set at an intimate SXSW show a couple years ago. Putting these two together with departing showrunner Rory Albanese is inspired. This will be a great show.


Daily Show and Friends: An Evening of Standup
Friday, November 8th
Doors @ 7:00pm | Show @ 8:00pm
The Paramount Theatre

Purchase Tickets Online
Or call (512) 474-1221 to purchase tickets by phone

‘Up Next’ Finalist Chris Cubas Readies for New York Comedy Fest Appearance


As we reported last month, Austin comic Chris Cubas advanced in Comedy Central’s Up Next competition and as a result will perform at the New York Comedy Festival on Wednesday night. Cubas will appear on the Comics To Watch  show which features “the best up-and-coming young comedians from across the country.”

In this exclusive clip from Comedy Central, Jonah Ray talks to Cubas who, along with Tone Bell, was one of two finalists from the Florida semifinals.


Beginning November 11th, you can vote for Chris as your “Up Next Fan Favorite” giving him a chance to win $2500, a Comedy Central Records digital release, an appearance on a future Comedy Central series, and more!