The Humor Mill

The All New 'Roast Battle' Breaks Down New Boundaries In Comedy; Is This The Future?

Posted Sep 19, 2014

Rell BrianWith one of the hottest comedy shows in the country, we discovered the news about The Roast Battle by chance; with a phone call. What we heard was the news about a brand new comedy show that has the Los Angeles comedy community talking because its the only show that has sold out every Tuesday for the past year!

Now that may not like seem like its a major accomplishment anywhere else in the country, but when you are competing against comedy shows like All Def Digital’s Wednesday nights, Inside Jokes, Chocolate Sundaes, Mo Betta Mondays and The Comedy Union (just to name a few) it is an accomplishment because the crowd is fickle and on any given night any venue in LA will have surprise performances from comedic rock stars such as Kevin Hart, Chris Rock, Dave Chappelle, or Damon Wayans, and selling out a show becomes almost impossible. You never know who’s going to show up to perform, and that’s the luxury of living in LA and visiting the comedy scene. That’s also why its EXTREMELY difficult to maintain any type of comedy show in LA. If you don’t believe us, ask any comedy promoter living in LA and trying to make a living.

What makes The Roast Battle an even more of an incredulous story is its humbling beginnings. What started out as a possible fist fight became what we see today as The Roast Battle; two comedians on stage cracking one one another. Founders of the show, comedians Brian Moses (the host) and Rell Battle (one of the show’s judges and known as the ‘Don King‘ of the show) were at The Comedy Store one night as usual and happened to break up a possible fight. While doing so they convinced the comedians who were about to fight to take their aggression out on stage. What transpired was a show that started to pack in The Belly Room at The Comedy Store immediately. Several weeks after that night, comedian Jeff Ross becomes affiliated with the show as The Roast Master and the show takes off.

The appeal of the show is that The Roast Battle is unique because its not a while or a black comedy show that would feature a white or a black audience dictated by the promoters or the line up. Its a show that has everyone included regardless of race or nationality pairing off against the other. There is young versus old, new comic versus the veteran, the white comic versus the Indian comedian, the old black comedian versus the young black comic and so on.

The show transforms into a no-holds barred comedy show with a roast master (Ross) with other guest judges. In the past the judges have included Brett Ratner, Affion Crockett, Sarah Silverman, Esau McGraw and tons of other celebrities. On the night we attended the show Craig Robinson was in the audience along with several comedians from NBC’s Last Comic Standing, and too many agents from all of the major agencies, possibly looking for that new talent. That’s a major accomplishment that should be noted too because most of the agents in LA don’t visit the comedy shows anymore. While we were in attendance we witnessed an agent from every single agency in the house. That never happens.

We hear that several past comic battles have become epic with the likes of many comedians who have battled. Comics like James Davis and Sydney Castillo once did and several people are STILL talking about that show. As far as we can tell there have been many battles featuring many comedians and too many to list here.

So how bright is the future of The Roast Battle? We can’t say for certain but we do know that the show’s producers are talking to everyone to see this show broadcast on TV and we know that its coming. Maybe because the show has been compared to us as this generations version of Def Comedy Jam by several agents which may in turn get this comedy show on TV quicker than usual. We don’t know for certain, but we do know something is happening-quickly.

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