But this is not kid stuff. You start laughing at some of Banks's material because of his delivery or because you think you know what the punch line will be. Then he pulls the rug out from under himself and surprises you with a verbal pratfall. For example, his falsetto delivery on one song, with the repeated first line "I'm wearing pink underwear and a teeny tiny sweater," leads you in one direction; you think you know who his character is and where he's going with that line. Then he delivers the second, and last, line with perfect musical and comic timing: "I really need to learn to do my laundry." Or there is his song about driving through Iowa: "Corn, corn, corn, corn--look there's a tree! Corn, corn, corn corn ..." It doesn't matter if you've heard some of his skits or shticks before--both times I saw him there were fans in the audience who sang right along with him on some songs--Banks's delivery will make you laugh even when you know the lines as well as he does.
See you at Banks's show at the Ark. I'll be the one with the Advil and the wad of Kleenex.
[Originally published in March, 2014.]