Right off the bat, Myq Kaplan lets the audience know that his plan for this gig is for us all to feel more united and less alone. He accomplishes this through a series of anecdotes about times he’s connected – mostly accidentally – with others: a large, gun-toting Alabaman, or the people he encounters after his Ayahuasca trips – which is the only experience, he says, that leads him to believe that humans have souls.
Kaplan has appeared on Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central and The Tonight Show, and has had a Netflix and Amazon special. You can tell he’s seasoned: his set is tight and packed with considered callbacks. He threatens throughout to do his ‘cute, silly joke’, which turns out – if you’re into wordplay – to be a particular highlight: a pun run based around the word ‘gnocchi’. Silly and cute it is, and a pretty decent summation of Kaplan’s gentle personality.
‘My religion is kindness,’ he says, and so is his comedy. That’s not to say he can’t be biting, it’s just that – as he admits – his humour is often described as ‘cerebral’, and not in a snobby, exclusive way – recurring toilet jokes lay waste to that theory. He takes off on a wander into infinity, questioning what is real and what isn’t, before coming to the conclusion that humans are simply the laps of the universe – and that’s not a bad thing. Since we’re so insignificant, human connection is even more important, and finding ways to achieve that – whether through drugs or Nickelback – is essential.
Until Sun 26 Aug (not 13), Underbelly, Bristo Square, 9.15pm, £12-13 (£11-12).