Campus

Meet the Funniest Fellas at BU

By Kelly Dickinson • April 13, 2012 at 3:00 pm


Left to Right: Musgrave, Stern, Peine, Niblock. | Photo by Ashely Seenauth via Rooftop Comedy

Earlier this year, Boston University was chosen to participate in TBS’s National College Comedy Competition. Initially, the BU comedians competed against one another for four spots on a team representing our school. But now, they band together to form an alliance to face a common enemy: the team from Boston College.

The competition has moved from its staged component into its online one. The teams from BU and BC square off in an online voting round that lasts until this Sunday. The winner will move on to the next round to face either Tufts or Emerson.

While The Quad is an unaffiliated publication, an unbiased bastion of journalistic integrity, and as such explicitly endorses no candidates, we feel it is a crime not to introduce the community to the gentlemen representing our fair school.

So here they are!

Nick Peine, 2013, CAS, Psychology.

Quad: What is your experience in comedy? How did you get into it? Are you a stand-up dark horse? A seasoned funnyman with years of accrued knowledge?

I started doing stand up when I was seventeen. I thought it would make me cooler. It did not. What is a dark horse? Sounds racist. I have been doing this for four years.

Quad: Who/what is your comedic inspiration?

My comedic influences change constantly. I keep up with comedy and enjoy a variety of people. If I had to name my favorites of all time, they would be: Nick Swardson (whom I have opened for twice), Louis CK, Eddie Murphy, Sinbad, Richard Pryor, Tommy Johnagin, Steven Wright, David Cross, Hannibal Buress, Mitch Fatel, Dave Attell, Daniel Tosh, Anthony Jeselnik, Shane Mauss, Mike Epps, and Patton Oswalt.

Quad: What steps is your team taking to ensure that BU crushes BC? And also, why does the BU team deserve victory?

I am lazy. I am voting as often as I can and sending the link to voting to friends, but that’s about all. BU deserves to win because we are more attractive, smarter, more distinguished, less racist, less fat, less sexually perverted, and more boss than any other team.

Quad: What would you do if you won the competition?

What would I do if we won? If I had to pee at the moment, I would do that, then celebrate with the team. Then go to Chicago and kill it.

Quad: Invent your own question that you wish I had asked, and answer it.

Q: Are you single?   A: Yes.

 

Tom Niblock, CAS 2013, Philosophy

Quad: What is your experience in comedy? How did you get into it? Are you a stand-up dark horse? A seasoned funnyman with years of accrued knowledge?

This competition was the first time I had ever tried stand up and the recorded performance was only my second time on stage.

Quad: Who/what is your comedic inspiration?

While I don’t think I have a style anything like him, Mitch Hedberg will forever be my favorite comedian.

Quad: What steps is your team taking to ensure that BU crushes BC? And also, why does the BU team deserve victory?

We plan to bug the heck out of all our friends via Facebook and Twitter.  Voting can happen ever 5 minutes… So just keep the page open and refresh once in a while.

Quad: What would you do if you won the competition?

We get to perform in Chicago over the summer and spend the next three decades making fun of the comedians from the other participating schools.

Quad: Invent your own question that you wish I had asked, and answer it.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who is interested in trying stand-up comedy? A: Don’t plan to just make things up on the fly–plan out your set and practice it in the mirror until it is memorized.

 

Ari Stern, 2013, CAS, BA/MA in Energy and Environmental Analysis

Quad: What is your experience in comedy? How did you get into it? Are you a stand-up dark horse? A seasoned funnyman with years of accrued knowledge?

Up until this past year my main experience has been doing improv comedy with BU’s Liquid Fun. However, I’ve always wanted to do stand-up. I was always a little afraid to try it because it’s so scary. In improv if you mess up on stage or do something that wasn’t funny, not only do you have fellow cast members to back you up, but the audience also knows you’re making it up on the spot so you can play anything off by just going “man, I can’t believe my brain did that”. In stand-up though, you’re telling the audience jokes that you wrote earlier, decided were funny, and laughed about to yourself. So if they don’t find the jokes funny, you’re stuck their on stage looking like a doofus. For this reason I was scared to try stand-up. Then sophomore year I entered BU’s Funniest because I knew if I was ever going to try it, college would be the best time. It was my first time doing stand up and I did very well. I won BU’s Funniest Viewer’s Choice that year, and although it was partially due to having a lot of friends in the audience, I think I also did a good job.

Quad: Who/what is your comedic inspiration?

As a kid I always loved Robin Williams and Bill Cosby. I also loved all of the oscar hosts like Whoopi Goldberg and Billy Crystal. As I got older, in middle school and high school my favorites switched to Louie C. K. and Paul F. Tompkins. I like the story tellers. I love people who do one liners too, but not as much as story tellers, maybe because I could never do one liners and it frustrates me.

Quad: What steps is your team taking to ensure that BU crushes BC? And also, why does the BU team deserve victory?

We have sent blank checks signed by the trustees of BU to all of the judges. I thought I saw Shawn putting on high heels and heading out for the night in some fancy dress…I’m not sure if that was related or not.
BU deserves the victory because, frankly, we’re funny. The four of us are representing more than just ourselves. BU this year has grown into the home of a brilliant young stand-up community. There are maybe ten to fifteen guys and gals that are hilarious and just could not fit into the four slots. This about how funny BU is, and BU is very funny. Oh yeah, and BC sucks.

Quad: What would you do if you won the competition?

If I won this competition I WOULD TELL EVERYBODY! IT WOULD TOTALLY CHANGE MY LIFE. I would instantly be the most famous person alive. Actually, I mean I’d be very proud and humbled that people found me funny and believed in me. I’d keep doing stand up more and more.

Quad: Invent your own question that you wish I had asked, and answer it.

Q: What was the weirdest show experience you ever had? A: There’s been quite a few weird ones. The first one that pops into my head was ImprovBoston’s naked comedy showcase in which I did a five minute set completely naked in front of maybe 90 people. I thought it would make me more comfortable on stage. It was a lot of fun and one of the best sets I’ve had because once they’ve seen your dick, what else is there to lose?

Another weird one was a show in Philly. I was told I was doing a ten minute set and that there would be four other comics also doing ten minutes. When I showed up the woman there told me I was hosting the show as well. I live in Boston and did not know any of these Philly guys. I just had to make up introductions for people on the spot. My improv came in handy there. Also a weird thing about that was the audience was almost all 50-year-old women.

Shawn Musgrave, CAS 2012, Economics and Global Development
Quad: What is your experience in comedy? How did you get into it? Are you a stand-up dark horse? A seasoned funnyman with years of accrued knowledge?
I’ve done improv since high school, and am currently in BU’s Liquid Fun as well as the Face Off troupe at ImprovBoston. I only started to get into standup last summer.
Quad: Who/what is your comedic inspiration?
I find the most comedy in true stories and experiences, and most of my material comes from childhood memories and my family. I’ve also toyed with more bizarre, concept-y stuff, but I feel most grounded with stories from real life.

Quad: What steps is your team taking to ensure that BU crushes BC? And also, why does the BU team deserve victory?

We’re trying to get the word out to as many people at BU as possible about the competition and let our clips speak for themselves. Both BU and BC have great comics, of course, but with the full force of BU behind us, we’re hoping to clinch this round. We deserve to win because rumor has it, at least, that BC sucks. I couldn’t quote you any solid numbers or anything, but I’ve definitely read that before, that BC sucks.
Quad: What would you do if you won the competition?
If we won and got to go to Chicago, I would pay someone to fill a cooler with Gatorade and pour it on the four of us in the middle of Nickerson Field. Just to get the full CHAMPION feeling.
Quad: Invent your own question that you wish I had asked, and answer it.
Q: Are those your real teeth?  A: Yes, they are indeed, Kelly. They are indeed.
 Watch clips and vote on the Rooftop Comedy website. Voting continues until 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 15. You can vote every five minutes, so do as they say: vote early and vote often.

Kelly is a CAS/COM senior double-majoring in Psychology and Film. She was the editor-in-chief last year, but she ceded to Ingrid in a mostly-bloodless coup. Right now, she's Producing on QuadCast, checking off her BU bucket-list and hunting for one of those "job" things.



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