If you've ever groaned over a bad prop comic at a comedy club, you'll appreciate Poppa Proppa. That's the name of The Loner Show host Brian Barlow's more clever alter ego. Decked out in Value Village wear and a shaggy old do, the blissfully unselfconscious entertainer delivers painfully bad jokes involving any number of inanimate objects. Canada's self-professed oldest prop comedian hits the Supermarket Tuesday (November 20), preceded by stand-up Levi MacDougall.
So why did you retire in the mid-1970s?
I saw the movie Star Wars and thought it was a documentary. I got so scared I quit everything.
What are some of your best memories of comedy back then?
I performed for Richard Nixon. He liked me so much he offered me dinner but warned, "I am not a cook!"
Was there a lot of drug use then?
A lot of people did Coke. But I preferred the taste of Pepsi in my schnozz.
What's your daily medication regimen today?
Just Viagra in the morning. Keeps me up all day.
What brought you back to the stage?
Momma Proppa passed away last year. Her last wish was for me to make the world laugh again.
How is the strong loonie affecting your life?
It's been great, because I've been saving my money in a "loonie bin" for years.
Are there any comedy clubs in town that won't hire you?
All of them! None of them have big enough loading docks for my props.
How do you handle comedy groupies?
I tell the head nurse at the retirement home that it's time for her nap.
Last movie that made you cry?
E.T. Danny DeVito was excellent as the friendly alien.
If you had a personal ad in NOW Magazine, what would it say?
SWOMPC (single white old male prop comic) seeks AWWLAHPJ (anyone who will laugh at his prop jokes).
What do you think of this Brian Barlow fellow?
He's a good kid. Reminds me of me when I was his age.