By MIKE CHAIKEN
Comedian Alonzo Bodden does not shy away from poking at the powers-that-be in America and the issues of today.
Social commentary is his raison d’etre.
But even for someone like Bodden who takes great delight in skewering the newsmakers of 2018, today’s headlines can be a bit much.
Alonzo Bodden comes to Comix at Mohegan Sun from Sept. 28 and 29.
Bodden explained comics like him love to take the stage and take on and deflate President Trump.
But Bodden, in a phone interview from Los Angeles said, “You can’t do it every day… It’s almost boring… It’s like, ‘What stupid thing did he say today?’”
Making fun of the president, said Bodden, is tough because it’s hard to come up with something crazier than what Trump already has done.
Comedians—and the news media— have taken a lot of criticism from some politicians and the public because of their willingness to criticize the president. But, Bodden said he never pulls his punches because of the charged atmosphere in 2018. “I don’t think about it because it’s what I do, social commentary.”
But, at his shows, Bodden assumes he is in a safe space. After all, he said, all one has to do is look at Bodden to know he’s not likely to make jokes criticizing the move in southern states to take down Confederate statues and Confederate flags.
The audience knows what Bodden is all about. “The crowds are into it.”
As for topics that he considers off limits, Bodden said he has none.
However, the comedian said there are some events he won’t joke about. For instance, don’t expect cracks about 9-11. However, he said he isn’t afraid to skewer some of the activities surrounding the 9-11 commemoration, such as a store that holds a 9-11 sale.
“If I can say something funny about it, I’ll go into it,” he said.
Although social commentary is his preference, Bodden said audiences should not expect an entire evening of hard-hitting humor.
“I break it up,” said Bodden. He doesn’t want the show to be all doom and gloom laughs.
In addition to his career as stand-up comic, Bodden is also a regular guest on the radio program “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me” on NPR. According to NPR.org, the show is “weekly hour-long quiz program. Each week on the radio, you can test your knowledge against some of the best and brightest in the news and entertainment world while figuring out what’s real news and what’s made up.”
Bodden said the show helps sharpen his stand-up skills. For instance, the show forces him to improvise, since he doesn’t know what he will be asked until it’s asked. And each week, the show is different.
“It’s so much fun to do something new and different,” he said.
In addition to “Wait Wait…,” Bodden has done work in television and film, including a role on the Showtime program “Californication.”
“TV and film, it’s a great job,” said Bodden. “I’m only an actor in the most generous sense of the word… but it’s fun to do… It’s something different.”
Acting, however, is key to his next project, said Bodden. He is working with a production team on developing a new television show. “That’s something comics are always working on,” he said.
Additionally, Bodden said he is prepping for his next one-hour comedy special and he’s working on a DVD.
“I’m always looking for jobs,” he said. “I’ll never give up stand-up… but traveling can get old.”
For fans coming out to Comix, Bodden said they should definitely expect social commentary. He will hit them first with heavy topics, then back off with some lightweight topics, then back to heavy then light. Back and forth.
“It will be funny, that’s guaranteed,” said Bodden.
Bodden added, “If you’re a fan of Confederate statues, you might want to miss this one.”
Alonzo Bodden performs at Comix at Mohegan Sun, Uncasville on Friday, Sept. 28 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 29 at 7:30 and 10 p.m.
For more information, go to comixmohegansun.com and www.AlonzoBodden.com