Jackie Mason: The Ultimate Jew
(Jackie Mason Website)
New World Stages
340 West 50th Street
NY, NY 10019
Jyll Rosenfeld, IAG & Allen Spivack/Adam Spivack/Larry Magid
Jackie Mason, Star, Writer, Director
Set Design: Brian Webb
Lighting Design: Paul Miller
Sound Design: Ryan Powers
Associate Producers; Mickey Shapiro/Archie Gianunzio
General Press: David Gersten & Associates
Marketing: Keith Hurd
General Management: Theatre Production Group LLC
Production Stage Manager: Steve Sabaugh
Technical Supervision: production glue, llc
Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
June 26, 2008
I was thrilled to see Jackie Mason this one last time, before he retires from the Broadway stage, or so he says he will. He does have a radio gig and a video blog and more on his Website. And, he’ll probably be traveling here and there and performing his one-man, stand-up comedy for years to come. I cannot imagine Jackie Mason keeping all those jokes to himself. Jackie Mason: The Ultimate Jew is the title of this newest show, and he stands onstage with the titles of all of his previous shows in drape-like posters. I’ve seen most of them, and some jokes never tire. For example I learned long ago never to sit up front. Mason skewers his front row guests in a two-hour barbecue of one-liners, meant to publicly mock those who are too Gentile, too late in arriving, too single, too married, too tired, or too quiet. And, if they leave the theatre early, don’t ask.
Mason definitely brought with him brand new jokes, Obama, Clinton, McCain, news media, etc. He also recycled some of his best. There were the Jewish/Israel jokes, “Palestine offered me a half million dollars and funeral expenses” to do a show there. “Jews in Israel are so tough, I thought they were Puerto Ricans”. There were the French jokes, “Nouvelle Cuisine means nothing on the plate, but I can’t say I ate at Rosie’s Kitchen”. There were the Broadway jokes, “What was funny about the show, ‘Titanic’, a song about 3,000 people who died”. There were the status symbol jokes, “Nobody questions what society tells you to do. Jews go skiing! No Jew likes to ski; they’re always cold. Every little breeze, they put on a sweater. Then they go skiing, to say ‘I went skiing’”. There were the marriage jokes, “You ask a man, ‘Are you happily married?’ And he says, ‘29 years’. Nobody’s happily married 29 years.”
But he brought the house down with a rapid-fire series of one-liners about sex with a Jewish woman, “My hair! Don’t mess up my hair! What did you eat today? You got so heavy! Oh, My God, my nails, watch my nails!” Mason has tight timing, seamless follow-throughs, quick asides, “I just told myself a joke funnier than the one I told you”, and an uncanny ability to read his audience. After some political jokes, he polled the audience, McCain hands in the air, then Obama hands in the air. It was about even. Afterwards, he seemed to let go of the political candidate humor and to get back to the Clintons, the status restaurants, the status opera, the Gentiles, and the Jews. The audience roared. I may catch the show one more time, just in case this is really his last show. You can purchase tickets through Mason's Website.
Courtesy of Barry Avrich
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