1 Disc Widescreen Edition (2010) – Being Released March 30, 2010
“Joe Rogan: Talking Monkeys in Space” was written and performed by Joe Rogan and produced and directed by Anthony Giordano. Joe Rogan is a comedian, actor, color commentator on UFC, and a former host of the gross-out TV Show “Fear Factor”. This DVD is his stand-up performance in Columbus, Ohio.
The intro graphics and the menu on this DVD are very impressive. The actual stand-up performance is just a little over forty minutes and it felt pretty short. Rogan never gets much into any stories, just a few very brief situations and lots of insulting remarks about types of people.
He starts off jokes about weed and then aging. He has way too much material about the babies and breast milk. His remarks on the pot commercials with the girl and her talking dog are probably the most funny, widely relevant comedy in the whole special. This leads into the pros and cons of pot use.
The comedy comes up a little more talking about humans descending from monkeys and the evolution argument transitioning into religion. Eventually he transcends into the wild world of masturbation where he spends the rest of the special, an excessive amount of time.
Wow, he is really sweating profusely. He also has a distinctive straight tan line right where his hairline starts to recede and he wears a hat.
Joe Rogan’s personality is a little off-putting. I can tolerate the alienation of Dane Cook, but Rogan uses the raunchiness without a lot of recovery period. Swearing, sex, masturbation, breast milk, porn, and lots of drugs are all subjects covered in this stand-up special in the least delicate way possible and I just don’t find his personality to be charming or charismatic. If you think those subjects are hilarious regardless of the delivery, then by all means you might really like this DVD. I just think these subjects are easy for shock value and getting a reaction. It is much more difficult to have creative stand-up comedy with less toilet humor and more stories and situations. Taking the easy way out and just saying shocking things doesn’t feel that impressive.
There are an additional 25 minutes as an extra for the DVD that were not included in the original special. After the applause, Joe Rogan jumps back onstage for an audience Q&A where he riffs off of obscure and related questions alike. There are standard ones about the grossest things he had to witness in his time with “Fear Factor” and jujitsu training and silly questions about what characters would win in a fight. Another tangent lots of people ask about are specific drugs he knows about and/or uses and how. Funny thing is he gets really scientific about it when he gets going on the subject. All audience members asking questions are drunk, one guy even stoops to asking how drunk Rogan thinks he would have to get the girl standing in line behind him to perform certain sexual acts with him which just makes everyone awkwardly laugh.
Rogan does come off more honest at one point when a fellow performer asks about breaking into the industry and in the most colorful way possible, he admits that you have to practice and fail miserably often before you can get better and start to succeed in show business. His technique was just to say crazier and crazier things and was willing to take money for any job. Joe Rogan comes off more as an actual person and the act feels more authentic when he’s just riffing off people’s questions instead of doing his actual act. It’s less rehearsed and is more naturally funny.
The Behind-the-Scenes segment runs about 18 minutes and talks about life on the road and traveling with friends. His workout regimen supposedly helps him chill out before shows. He claims not to have inspiration but likes to have a weird perspective on life about chimp attacks, drugs, and sex. “Talking Monkeys in Columbus” is the journey of the making of this particular special. It shows a few minutes of Rogan warming up at a smaller gig before the big taped segment and the sound check before the audience coming in to the show. The crowd really loves him and started chanting “LET US IN”. Then we get a story about an incident on the airplane. You also get to see the confirming of the intro graphics and jumping around backstage preparing before the show. It’s a lot of shaky handheld camera work that isn’t very interesting short of the airplane story (which isn’t Rogan) and you won’t be interested unless you’re already an established Rogan fan.