Your next seven days should be filled with laughter. The following could help.
Friday, June 24: Shawn Mikael’s Theater at DC Improv
There aren’t enough variety shows in town. Yes, there’s stand-up and there’s sketch but the two don’t hang out nearly enough. Shawn Mikael’s Theater is filling the void with four shows over two days in three venues. This is the first of the four performances and I’m recommending it because of stand up Emily Ruskowski. If you’re a fan of quick-witted, not-very-family-friendly comedy, she’s a treat. 8 p.m., $10, 21+
Saturday, June 25: There Will Be Laughter 4 at Arlington Draft House
Sooner or later Hampton Yount and Will Hessler won’t be in D.C. (or near it). Actually, Mr. Yount is already based in Los Angeles and Mr. Hessler is headed west next month, making this fourth installment of “There Will Be Laughter” that much more special. These two comics will be performing much longer sets than the usual eight minutes. They’re bringing in Andy Haynes, another former D.C. comic who was very funny on a recent Jimmy Fallon appearance. The show promises some surprises, like a new video sketch and other things people like.
If you’ve never seen Yount, check out the clip above. He hates the founding father of this great country and that’s why I like Yount. 9:30 p.m., $15, 21+
Sunday, June 26: Mouse Games at Chief Ike’s
This is the inaugural edition of Mouse Games, Micahel Foody’s new open mic. I usually don’t recommend open mics because I like the people that read this blog, but this promises very consistent laughs. Mr. Foody is my favorite D.C. comedian. He’s far from the norm and will either end up as an original voice that inspires legions of comedy nerds, or he’ll be stolen from until the mainstream catches up. This open mic is a great chance to see the stand up every few minutes for two hours. 8 p.m., Free, 21+
Tuesday, June 28: Cool Cow Comedy at Ragtime
Comedy shows are cursed with awful names. On a completely separate note, this lineup features a nice sampling of D.C. talent. With more than 10 local comics and a headlining set from the very funny Jeff Mauer, this is a very fine way to spend a usually dead night for comedy. 8 p.m., free, 21+
Wednesday, June 29: Planes, Trains & Automobiles at NoMa Summer Screen
John Candy had some of the most well-rounded, emotionally driven performances of the ’80s and ’90s. No film exemplifies this better than Planes, Trains and Automobiles. John Hughes brought it out of the comedic genius like no other. Yes, some of the film plays like a 1950s melodrama, but it is also able to get laughs from the bellies of the audience. Just think about the scene with the car on fire. Now conjure up Mr. Candy waiting for the train, as the widow who just wants a family. Steve Martin is also in this little flick. He can be funny, too. 9 p.m., free, all-ages
Thursday, June 30: Earth vs. the Flying Saucers at Ring Auditorium
Science-fiction from the ’50s is awesome. It’s full of dialogue that can and has been used by MF DOOM, is really afraid of communism, the characters are dressed like they’re going to church and the trailers are worthy of any Rob Zombie music video. They’re so much more satisfying when the place you live is being destroyed. Nothing screams comedy like really dated special effects of the White House being blown up. 7 p.m., free, all-ages