ATHF Dave and Dana Live
1 May 2010
St Andrew's Hall, Detroit
Surreal. Just surreal.
Have you ever had that experience where you're watching a cartoon and you know that voice... you just KNOW that voice, and you're trying to match it to a face...? This was the opposite universe version of that. This was the voice of a cartoon coming out of the body of a real person. Two real people, actually. Two real people, standing right in front of me, and acting very silly.
I mean that in the best possible way, of course.
If you're not already familiar with Aqua Teen Hunger Force, it would probably take longer to describe the show than it's running time -- after all, it's one of the only 11-minute shows on TV. The live show was like old-school Vaudeville mixed with teenaged stoner humor (more than a little appropriate, I suspect, for the all-ages show).
St Andrew's was set up with folding chairs filling the main floor (when was the last time you saw anything at St Andrew's, let alone something with chairs?) and the stage itself was relatively sparse -- the props came later -- with a large projection screen at center. This is where they shared with us the paradigm-shattering spectacle that was...
I was going to rub it in that I saw it and you didn't, and be all coy about how I wouldn't spoil it, but... here, go watch. Funny shit.
And I mean, that's weird even for them.
After being treated to some excerpts from the reel of Dana Snyder: Professional Actor (he can act the HELL out of a denim jacket, it's true), things got awesome and bizarre. Yes, there were puppets, including a mini Master Shake, which was so goddamned adorable, I could curl up to sleep with it every night. Full disclosure: I think Master Shake is one of the best television characters ever created. And you know that crazy voice of his? That's pretty much Dana Snyder unaltered. To say nothing of the raw (dairy) animal magnetism. Rrrow.
Some of the other highlights of the gig included America's Next Top Meatwad, where several audience members came up on the mic to do their best rendition of everyone's favorite blob of beef. This did not include this lovely lady, who was apparently just there for the cosplay.
Sizzlin', I know. There was also the educational Cooking with Granny segment, where the Squidbillies matriarch Granny Cuyler (with Dana Snyder up her bum, naturally) did her best to completely molest some young cutie from the audience. What I did not learn about cooking, I learned about the liberties one can take with a felt squid at the end of one's arm. I should never leave home without one.
Aside from that, I'd call Carl's Regional Beef my favorite moment in the show. Ignoring the rift in the space-time continuum created by the voice of Carl Brutananadilewski AND the puppet of Carl AND the cartoon of Carl AND the live-action Carl (just sitting there eating wings; scariest thing ever) all sharing the same stage, Carl really laid some Motorcity-style truth down. Shout out.
"Look I know that this is the murder capital of the world, and I think that's liberal media bias. Cuz I been here for four hours and I ain't been murdered yet! And all you people, except for that one guy in the back with the red shirt, he looks kinda murdered. I notice there's a few empty seats, so I hope they at least bought a ticket before they did get murdered. But I will say this, Motorcity, you got some problems. And I, Carl, got some solutions. First off, Detroit Rock City, I would restore law and order in your urban areas -- Robocop ain't cuttin it. I think his human side is giving him, like, problems or something, with emotions. That's why you gotta go back to the ED209. At least with ED209, I know a lot of innocent people will get killed, but sometimes in order to make an omelette, you gotta shoot some eggs in the chest."
As further proof of their dedication to their craft, after the show, Dave and Dana (and yes, the real-live Carl) answered questions, shook hands, signed people and clothing, ate Meatwad cake... and if I hadn't been so generously watered by the beautiful redhead behind the bar, I would have definitely stuck around to get a Master Shake stylee voice mail greeting. Sometimes the cost of having too much fun is getting shot in the chest, I guess.