Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • Your style is not that easily packed into a short set,

  • 'cause you tend to be more a story teller, long form.

  • You take your time.

  • And these are all compliments.

  • You're not just calling me lazy.

  • (both laughing)

  • Yeah, take your time.

  • Tell these stories.

  • He's always got an excuse.

  • You're more of a marathoner and I'm going hey,

  • I've got this 50-yard dash I want you to run.

  • Yeah, and also you're the first person

  • to ever call me a racer of any kind.

  • (lively music)

  • [JP] A lot of work goes into a short

  • late-night stand up set.

  • Join me, JP Buck, as I spotlight the comedians

  • who came up with some of my favorite Conan sets.

  • This is The Set Up.

  • [Conan] Please welcome back to our show,

  • very funny guy Shane Torres.

  • Let's talk about this Guy Fieri set.

  • How does this thought come to you?

  • I always wanted to tell jokes

  • that nobody else could tell, right?

  • Like, meaning they were mine.

  • That's him, it sounds like him right away.

  • One of the things I would always see people doing

  • as far as subject matter goes was just be like,

  • the easiest way to say something is shitty

  • is it's like Guy Fieri blah, blah, blah.

  • It was something I saw people doing forever.

  • And really I thought it was

  • kind of a dumb way to pack a parachute.

  • It just was unimaginative to me

  • and not really well researched

  • and just very much in my mind a bit lazy

  • when I would see it a bunch.

  • Not even to say it doesn't work,

  • but it wasn't something I found terribly exciting.

  • It was like top 40 radio to me.

  • So I kinda thought, well what's different?

  • Just think about it for a second,

  • 'cause it's also the opinion everybody held about him.

  • At the time was just unanimous that he sucked, you know?

  • And I was like, maybe he doesn't.

  • Well, let's find out.

  • It started with the very opening line of the joke,

  • that's the one thing that didn't

  • really change ever that much.

  • Can someone please explain to me

  • what the hell Guy Fieri ever did to anyone?

  • The first time I did it

  • I did it at Whiplash on the West Side of Manhattan

  • and it got a huge pop.

  • I remember it being, oh this is a good joke

  • because I had to follow Judd Apatow.

  • (both laughing) So I was like, well if I'm keeping up

  • with the kind of Hollywood, I'm doing all right.

  • (lively music)

  • It would be hard to do a bit like this,

  • say back in like the '80s before social media,

  • before this sort of uniformity of thought

  • of where people are sort of just the hive mind

  • of like, oh that guy hates it?

  • Yeah, I'm on board with that.

  • Yeah, it just kinda became negativity

  • was just an opinion on him, but it wasn't informed.

  • And it's kind of a way people are in general,

  • just like, ah that person sucks, this sucks, that sucks.

  • And there was never okay, sure.

  • I understand how to react to something

  • when you don't like it,

  • but I also think you should still explain it.

  • Also, how often do you need

  • to hate someone like Guy Fieri?

  • Really, is he ever in your house,

  • is he in your place of work,

  • are you interacting with him?

  • Why carry around that?

  • And then there was a guy I met,

  • and I thought this was actually very interesting.

  • You don't even know you do it,

  • but a guy in Austin, I think his name is Brendan K O'Grady,

  • and he goes, hey that bit's great,

  • and just so you know, I make fun of him,

  • but the very first thing I do whenever I'm on the road

  • is see if Guy Fieri's been to a restaurant there.

  • (both laughing)

  • What I love also

  • is you come right out of the box

  • delivering that first line.

  • You're not worrying about an opener.

  • You're not trying to do how's everybody.

  • I don't know if you remember this, we talked about it.

  • You called me and were like hey,

  • I love the bit and I think it's gonna do great,

  • but it is all one bit.

  • So just so you know, if they don't like it, you can't-

  • it's not The Cellar at 1:30.

  • You can't pivot out of it.

  • (JP laughing) You can't be like where was he going

  • with that Guy Fieri thing and then two minutes later

  • it's all everything bagels or whatever.

  • So I did think maybe I should just give them

  • one very soft thing, just to get them, hey real quick.

  • But then I was kinda like, ah (beep) it.

  • It's a little more fun to just be excited

  • and see how it goes.

  • (lively music)

  • Can someone please explain to me

  • what the hell Guy Fieri ever did to anyone?

  • (audience laughing)

  • Y'all know who I'm talking about, the celebrity chef?

  • People shit on that dude all the time

  • and as far as I can tell

  • all he ever did was follow his dreams.

  • (audience laughing)

  • You understand, people are horrible

  • to a television personality

  • and he didn't do anything wrong.

  • Here's what he did do, America.

  • The audiences sometimes at late night sets

  • in studios can be a little tight.

  • Yeah.

  • And that line, I've seen every time gets a huge pop,

  • and deservedly so. Every once in a while we get audience,

  • they're not as great as other audiences.

  • That happens everywhere.

  • Yeah, they're kinda leaning in going,

  • okay where are you going with this?

  • You know, when you're doing these big sets,

  • I'm sure everyone's told you this,

  • but you're like, oh my first little thing

  • didn't get the thing, didn't get what I expect of it.

  • And you're like ah (beep).

  • God, I feel like I've been up here an hour already.

  • (both laughing)

  • And you're like 20 seconds in.

  • I'm such a (beep) tin man armor kinda guy,

  • 'cause I remember thinking it would just get this loud pop

  • and then I was just gonna rev in

  • and hit them for four and a half minutes

  • or whatever it is, you know?

  • And I then I remember it feeling,

  • good, like it worked,

  • but it wasn't what I was expecting.

  • And then I remember I kinda felt like

  • I was moving a little faster.

  • You've got them already,

  • but I can definitely tell you've got

  • a little bit of a task ahead of you,

  • of going okay, this group of people

  • needs a little softening up.

  • He started a company where he hires everybody,

  • he pays more than minimum wage,

  • he gives health benefits before he has to,

  • he has a non-profit where he gives pretzel making machines

  • to schools so they can fundraise.

  • I know that one sounds like I made it up,

  • but I swear to Christ it's true.

  • (audience laughing)

  • You also have phrases that work really well,

  • that are purely yours.

  • I swear to Christ.

  • In other words, I don't write jokes well,

  • so I have to figure out a way to say things that are funny.

  • I would not agree with that.

  • I don't write them like punch liney,

  • like someone who is great,

  • but I'm not like him at all, Sam Morril.

  • His act is very punchy and very dense.

  • I think I have to just be like here I am,

  • this dumb country rube with all these weird sayings

  • or whatever.

  • (both laughing)

  • I like writing that way.

  • It's a fun way to be creative

  • and not take an easy way out and just say,

  • it's the craziest thing ever.

  • You know, that's kinda lazy writing.

  • So it's funner to embody a good turn of phrase, if you will.

  • He works with Special Olympics athletes

  • and if you need a little more sugar with this medicine,

  • he also officiated a gay wedding.

  • Yeah, but because he has flames on his shirt

  • (audience laughing)

  • everybody shits all over this dude

  • like he's a member of Nickelback.

  • (audience laughing)

  • And by the way, what the hell did Nickelback ever do?

  • (audience clapping)

  • They made 40 million bros happy?

  • Yeah, you don't want them walking around pissed off.

  • That's how we ended up in this mess.

  • The Nickelback thing, did that start out

  • as just a line and suddenly you were like,

  • oh wait, I can actually mine this a little more for a joke?

  • It started out as an is like joke,

  • which is not a thing I'm a huge fan of,

  • but I think you can take them further.

  • It's just the first step up the stairs.

  • But I said it, and I was like that's good, it'll work.

  • It's another thing people dog for no reason.

  • I didn't research.

  • They're not researched in the bit the way Guy Fieri is.

  • (JP laughing)

  • So they may actually be horrible people.

  • Yeah, they might be, but I saw somebody write,

  • I think, about that guy from Nickelback,

  • like he's a genius because he knows

  • exactly what people want and that's what he gives them.

  • And I was like, hey man that's a (beep) very good point.

  • I think I read it on Consequence of Sound

  • or something like that.

  • I was like, I wish I could credit whoever wrote it,

  • but it's like yeah, that's true.

  • It's just right there.

  • That's what they want.

  • They want to rock just enough.

  • (JP laughing) And he gives it to them every time.

  • Nobody gives anybody a seven out of 10

  • like Chad Kroeger from Nickelback.

  • (both laughing)

  • And look, I get it.

  • I don't want to hang out with Guy Fieri either, okay?

  • I know he looks like a Hot Topic manager

  • moonlighting at a Friday's.

  • But he didn't do anything wrong.

  • Well, what else has he done, Shane?

  • I'm so glad you asked.

  • He goes around the country to small businesses

  • and gives them free advertising

  • on a national platform on a weekly basis,

  • advertising those small businesses

  • could never afford themselves with his own television show.

  • But because his hair looks like he was electrocuted

  • while drinking Mountain Dew

  • (audience laughing)

  • people act like we need to saw his head off

  • and put it on the internet.

  • It does feel like you're involving the audience.

  • And even there in that set,

  • you do play the audience.

  • What else did he do, Shane?

  • You ask the question on their behalf,

  • even if they're not asking it,

  • but you keep it going.

  • (Shane laughing)

  • Special kind of ass hole it takes

  • to do something like that.

  • It's a way to check in with them

  • without halting all the information

  • and making it directly conversational,

  • as opposed to being like, are you enjoying this,

  • 'cause there's also no room for that in a late night set.

  • You can't just do crowd work.

  • Meanwhile, y'all can't get enough of Anthony Bourdain.

  • Now, I'll stop you here for a second,

  • 'cause I feel we do