It is always interesting to hear fat jokes from an obese comedian (others, not so much.) For anyone who works in the field of obesity prevention or alleviation, an overweight standup comic’s act might contain useful insights and even revelations.
For Blake Hammond, who bills himself as “Cincinnati’s premier fat comedian,” it all started when he was a small and “somewhat sickly” child, ditching first grade to stay home and watch Saturday Night Live reruns. He especially liked the Weekend Update segments, and later, after earning a degree in journalism, he became a freelance writer of reviews and features. But his reviews somehow tended to turn into roasts.
Accepting that he mainly wanted to write jokes, he started to dabble in live comedy by going up at open mics. At the same time, he was working intermittently at a restaurant, which enabled him to keep a finger on the pulse of what everyday people were thinking about, which is useful knowledge for anyone who puts together a comedy routine. With another comic, Jeremy Johnston, he co-hosts a podcast whose format is “two fat guys on a couch talking.”
Self-image and other issues
Hammond variously describes himself as a guy who looks like an Easter egg, a failed celebrity chef, or Jabba the Hutt. He talks about being picked on in grade school, “but I was fat, so I deserved it.” He recalls the marriage proposal he made: “I got down on my knee and my girlfriend called 911.”
He objects to the term “person of size” because it abbreviates to POS, the same initials as a very rude insult. (Sadly, his funniest fat jokes are not suitable for repetition here.) And there are dark hints. Hammond told an interviewer that he suffers from “crippling anxiety,” and he has referenced suicide. He talks about fat nightmares, which include shopping at the Big and Tall store and being weighed by the doctor.
Of course, if a certain type of crime occurs, there is an advantage to being fat, because “If they find a body on a hiking trail, they’re not going to come looking for me.”
For more on the intersection of obesity and comedy, see these posts:
“How Funny Is Obesity, Anyway?”
“A Strange Fellowship”
“Edutainment and Jim Gaffigan’s Books”
“Is Laughter Always Good Medicine?”
“Lisa Lampanelli and Stuffed”
“Mindy and Monica”
Your responses and feedback are welcome!
Source: “Cincinnati Comedian Blake Hammond to Tape Amazon Prime Special at MOTR Pub,” Citybeat.com, 10/26/21
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