When comedian Jim Gaffigan appeared onstage at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace (May 6–7), he paid homage to the room’s resident by saying he’s a big fan of “Celine Da-yon,” calling her beautiful, successful and talented. “I have nothing in common with her,” he deadpanned.
Self-deprecating humor is the bread and butter of Gaffigan’s act, along with the hilarity of having five small children. “You did this to yourself,” he said, quoting what people tell him when they see his pale, blond brood. He compared being a parent with being a tourist—both are “exhausted, broke and looking for a bathroom.” Early on in his act, Gaffigan addressed what most audience members were likely thinking—how his wife, Jeannie, was doing after undergoing brain surgery just two weeks ago. The comedian assured everyone she’s doing well and that the tumor was gone, “along with my ability to win an argument ever again.”
Gaffigan rarely strays into politics onstage, though these days, a comedian worth his salt has to at least dip his toe in murky waters. “I know a lot of people are worried about Trump,” he said. “But as a straight white man, I’ll be OK.”
The comedian’s best bits were the shorter jokes—his riff on fashion and massage therapists were side-splittingly funny—while others felt like extended anecdotes whose setup didn’t always pay off. He ended his act with unquestionably the best joke in his repertoire: the Hot Pocket. “It takes three minutes to cook a Hot Pocket and that’s how long it stays in your system,” the punch line goes. For the variations, he had some winners this time, including the Breakfast Hot Pocket (“Hey, good morning! You’re about to call in sick.”) and the Hot Pocket Sliders (“redundant”). At this point in his act, Gaffigan had the audience eating out of the palm of his hand, and they couldn’t get enough. At least there are those Netflix specials to watch again and again.