All comedians have a certain trademark, be it Patton Oswalt (drinking), Robin Williams (prattling like an ADHD child with Tourette’s) or Dave Chapelle (only playing secret shows announced hours before that start at midnight and go until 5am). Personally, I’m a fan of Lewis Black’s trademark: when he relates a story of unfathomable stupidity, perhaps involving Republicans, he shakes his head sharply, letting his jowls wiggle across his mouth, creating a distinctive “blubba-da blubba-da” sound. One never knows when the blubba-da blubba-da will strike, but when it does, it never fails to get a laugh—especially when combined with Black’s sharp wit. Blubba-da blubba-da the night away with Black on Friday, Jan. 13, at the Marin Center. 10 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael. 8pm. $40—$75. 415.473.6800.
Mention Steven Wright in the Bohemian newsroom, and various off-putting monotone impersonations of the famously apathetic comedian will swiftly follow. Since tickets to our oh-so-hilarious newsroom aren’t for sale, you may have to settle for seeing the lethargically voiced funnyman in person. Famous for his one-liners and impeccable comedic timing, Steven Wright and his “this joke is so not funny that it’s funny” style come to the West Coast on Sunday, Oct. 16 at the Uptown Theatre. 1350 Third St., Napa. 8pm. $40. 707.259.0123.
As Tyler Durden says in Fight Club, “You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake.” Although many of us, myself included, have been told from childhood that we can be or do anything our hearts desire, the judges at Santa Rosa’s Gong Show may strongly disagree. Though acts of silliness are encouraged and expected, only the real deal will earn the grand cash prize. Bring your “A” game against a real-live gong on Saturday, Oct. 15, at The Toad in the Hole. 116 Fifth St., Santa Rosa. 9pm. Free. 707.544.8623.
Love him or hate him—and boy, do people hate him—Gilbert Gottfried is still alive and kicking. Even after some ill-timed tsunami jokes cost him his job as the all-knowing and equally annoying Aflac duck, Gottfried still manages to keep his sense of humor intact. If you enjoy the sound of nails on a chalkboard, have a preference toward awkward jokes that make you want to hide under your seat or simply still love his incredible scene in The Aristocrats, Gottfried performs on Saturday, Oct. 8, at the Lincoln Theater. 100 California Dr., Yountville. 8pm. $35–$55. 707.944.9900.