Tom Cotter proves comedy is alive and loved as he advances on America’s Got Talent (Video)

By | August 30, 2012 at 6:35 pm | 4 comments | feature slider, News, TV/Movies | Tags: , ,

It’s hard out there for a comic– at least on NBC’s talent show, America’s Got Talent. On a show with sword swallowers and child opera singers, comedians, historically do not last long. (Melissa Villasenor made the semi-finals last year; Doogie Horner & Chips Cooney were only quarter-finalists the year before that). And why is that? Well, for one, it’s difficult to captivate a crowd by talking to them when you just followed a guy who shoots his girlfriend with a flaming bow and arrow.

Acts only get 90 seconds for each performance which is usually not enough time for a stand-up to build a relationship with the audience. However, New York City-based comedian Tom Cotter was voted into the final round of the very long and very confusing competition Wednesday night by doing just that. A traditional stand-up comedian, with no bells, whistles, instruments, puppets, or other alt-ey toys, has been on-point throughout the season. He delivers quick, concise, well-written jokes week in and week out. His choice of material has been perfect every time he’s taken the stage, focusing on a high Laughs Per Minute rate. He squeezes in three times the jokes most comics tell in the same time frame.

For his semi-finals performance (see video below), Cotter left the choice of material in judge (and fellow comedian) Howie Mandel’s well-sanitized hands by presenting a board of eight topics; he performed a 90-second set based on which topic Mandel chose (which turned out to be a very funny bit about college kids). Judge Howard Stern could not believe that the comedian had eight different sets prepared for the night and picked a different topic and asked to hear a joke from it. Cotter told a joke about homeless people that proved his “comedy on demand” presentation paid off!

It’s exciting to see the country give some respect to stand-up comedy and showing that it’s still a form of entertainment in high demand. We at Laughspin wish Tom Cotter the best of luck in the final round of competition and urge you all to tune in (and vote!) to America’s Got Talent on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8:00 pm.

And here’s a video of his original audition which i really liked:

About the Author

Billy Procida

Billy is a stand-up comedian in New York City. Every week he sits down with former lovers and special guests to talk about sex, dating, sexuality & gender on The Manwhore Podcast: A Sex-Positive Quest for Love. Follow Billy on Twitter: @TheBillyProcida

  • unfriended

    It’s not about having that much time, horsetooth. A captivating 90 second set with high LPM is incredibly difficult. To have 8 prepared that he felt would advance him is phenomenal. Putting together a tight 5 is hard. I can’t imagine how difficult 90 seconds is (especially since, as I’ve seen Tom perform many times, his whole act does not consist of one liners).

  • Rat Fink

    Way back about a month ago Greg Fitzsimmons on his Fitzdog radio podcast said he had inside info that Tom Cotter would advance. (one of the Sarah Silverman episodes)

    Is America’s Got Talent all fixed BS?

  • Gridlock Manifesto

    Tim Cotter had a pretty good idea with allowing a judge to
    choose his material, which would impress any comic, but he seemed so nervous,
    his delivery was a bit uncomfortable for me.
    His jokes were quite funny though, more so than most comics I see on TV
    these days. I’m happy for him despite Todd
    Oliver getting the shaft. I think it isn’t
    fair they only have three moving on, it should be four. As much as I love the
    show, when my Dish coworker comes over, sometimes we skip the interviews, but
    this time they were very good. We also
    get in another show to watch by watching, commercial free with Auto Hop on the
    PrimeTime Anytime recordings.

  • horsetooth

    How could anyone not believe a comedian can have 8 different 90 second sets. It’s called having an act.

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