In promotion of a new live performance available at his website, Louis CK is doing an Ask Me Anything over at Reddit today, and one of the questions he was asked was about how he thinks a comedian is supposed to approach his audience and all of that. His answer will make fans of craftiness happy:
i don’t know about “Supposed to” I think there’s a million ways to do things. there was a pitcher for the Yankees once named Orlando Hernandez or “el Duque” he was a cuban exile. A thing they said about him was he was hard to hit cause he had so many arm angles and release points. a hitter studies a pitcher and watches for the ball so he can time it, but with el duque, you don’t even know where the f****r is coming from. Nine o clock? Eleven? And does he let go of it up top or out front? Impossible. I sometimes think of comedy in those terms.
There are very few of us who have the raw talent in anything we do to be able to throw our career equivalent’s worth of 100 m.p.h. heat. We all have to be crafty. We all have to mess with the arm angles. It’s just how to get by.
And in light of that, it’s probably no accident that Orlando Hernandez and Louis CK are two of my favorites at what they do.