Plus: Danny Bevins, Jimmy 'J.J.' Walker, Bob Kephart, The Dennis Bono Show from Las Vegas and more...
As many of you know, this writer just happens to really like funny people, funny things and unique things. When I do find something of interest, I check it out and, if I think it's important enough, I bring it to your attention. Well, guess what? I've found an interesting book written by a member of the stand up comedian circuit: Tommy Blaze.
Blaze is the originator, along with illustrator Nate Fakes (now you have got to admit those two names, right away, can get you curious, right?), of a number of blogs written by Blaze and which first appeared on the Internet titled: “Knocking On Heavens Door.” Tommy has been a stand up comedian for more than two decades, and Fakes is an illustrator for “Mad Magazine.” The two men came together via a search on the Internet by Blaze for an illustrator, since he was not good at drawing.
The blog got a ton of hits on the Internet, and that was when Blaze (at the urging of his 10-year-old daughter, Delaney) decided to make it into a comic book. Blaze and Fakes communicated, and it was decided the book would cover the first 100 strips posted on the Internet. The result is a very interesting and funny comic book with full illustrations.
At first glance, it would appear that the two gentlemen have created a comic strip about a typically precocious six-year-old boy named Spencer, who lives in an average suburban neighborhood complete with a Mom, Dad, a baby sister and a very strange best friend—actually a very special best friend. It is here the similarities to Knocking on Heavens Door (KOHD), and any other comic strip that I can remember, ends, because Spencer's best friend is, for no particular reason that is explained—God.
Despite the fact The Almighty plays a large role in the comic strip, KOHD is neither preachy nor sacrilegious, but rather an amusing and endearing story of Spencer's struggle with the challenges of youth, authority and the world's changing times. With every step and misstep (and there are a lot of both in the first 100 strips), God diligently remains by his friends' side, which—as Spencer discovers—makes playing Hide and Seek virtually impossible. I truly found the strips thought provoking and at the same time funny. The little sister, by the way, who is constantly being picked on by Spencer, is based on Tommy's own daughter, Ruby, and how she terrorizes her older sister, Delaney.
While the humor is intended for adults, the content is completely family friendly and can benefit those of all ages. I honestly enjoyed the thought pattern that Blaze is able to capture in words. And, Fakes illustrations are truly amazing and on the money!
You can purchase the paperback comic book by going to: www.kohdcomic.com. Price for the 100 page publication is $19.99. Check with Amazon, where it is reportedly heading as it goes into its second printing. You can also enjoy it at (website closed), where new comics are posted each Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
THIS AND THAT QUICKLY:
While on the subject of comedy, the Comedy Stop at the Sahara Hotel has an interesting booking for this coming week, April 19 through 25. Jimmie “J.J.” Walker will be hosting the 90 minutes of laughter for producer Bob Kephart, and will be introducing fellow headliners, Russ Nagel and Danny Bevins. The following week (April 26 through May 2), Manny Oliveira returns with Hal Spear and Joe Delion. For reservations call the Sahara Box Office, (702) 737-2878.
The popular, “Dennis Bono Show from Las Vegas,” hosted by recording artist and entertainer, Dennis Bono, has joined “Stay Tuned America, Your Entertainment Superstation,” three times a week. The radio show can now be heard six times a week: Fridays on 91.5 FM at 6:00 p.m. and KDWN AM 720 at 11:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday at KDWN at 8:00 p.m. (All Pacific Standard Time).
David Saxe is not saying what or who, he will be booking into the former Wyrick Theater inside the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood, but the dynamic promoter has a bevy of talent just itching to find a home. Rumors are flying all over the Village, that some acts, currently located at other venues in town, have approached Saxe to move from where they are now to his new theater. David acquired the 435-seat venue and has already renamed it the Saxe Theater. The 22,000 square-foot entertainment facility will debut this June, and will be home to the first major talent-driven Las Vegas production in more than a decade. More on Saxe in a later column.