The 'Worstest' comedy in town


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Comedy comes in many forms, often difficult to experience all in one sitting. But this is America, so why not stuff your face with it all in a blowout, all-inclusive smorgasbord of fun?

Serving up as many funny dishes that it possibly can, The Worstest [sic] Generation comedy collective will host a comedy variety show at the Mill, 120 E. Burlington St., at 8 p.m. Saturday, an event that will include standup comedy, skits, short videos, improvisational comedy, and even some musical performances.

The Worstest Generation collective was formed early this summer when Spencer Loucks and Trent Struzynski began work on a short comedic web series. Since then, the group has expanded, and Saturday’s show will include four other local comedic performers and writers: Daniel Frana (who opened for T.J. Miller at a University of Iowa Campus Activities Board event in February), Jason Jeffers (“Q”), Daniel Yu, and Nick Butler. Because of its varied nature, the show is expected to cover a vast variety of genres and audience tastes.

“The group is all a little different. I don’t think any one of us really subscribes to one type of humor,” Loucks said. “When we all get together, it’s its own little monster.”

Several guest performers will also make appearances at the event, which will begin with traditional standup comedy, continue with various short films and scripted skits, and eventually end on a musical note that, should the opportunity arise, could feature an accordion.

“It’s interesting,” Struzynski said. “We’re going to get everything we can … It’s not sporadic, but it’s got [every form of comedy] we can get.”

Citing the success of the collective’s first show and a plethora of new material, Loucks is enthusiastic about the show.

“We’re excited because it’s going to be a Saturday show,” he said. “The last show was a Tuesday during the summer, and we still got 30 or 40 people there … We might throw in one or two of the videos or songs that did really well last time.”

Frana, one of Iowa City’s most prominent up-and-coming standup comedians, will perform in the show’s sketches, and he plans — as much as one can — to participate in the group improv. Besides performing at venues around town, he hosts a monthly standup show at the Mill and, with his three-or-so years on the scene, said he’s seen growth in the comedy of Iowa City.

“Now we’ve got the Yacht Club; we’ve got the Mill,” he said. “There are university shows … There are occasional shows at the Blue Moose. If people want to do standup, there’s always a venue for it. That’s something I completely encourage anyone to do if they feel like it.” Frana will also perform at the Beast Village Comedy Festival in Des Moines on Oct. 10 and 11.  The Mill will feature $3 tallboys and $2 specialty shots and, because it’s Loucks’s birthday weekend, will do something special to mark the occasion. The event will be a 19 and older after 10 p.m.

“It should be a lot of fun; that’s the long and short of it,” Struzynski said.

What: Comedy variety show featuring local talent
Where: Mill, 120 E. Burlington
When: 8 p.m. Saturday
Cost: $5 at the door

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