Is there a comedian alive who elicits a larger negative reaction than Frank Caliendo? From what I’ve seen of him he’s OK — although to be fair, I never sat through an entire episode of “Frank TV.” My friend Amazing Larry, however, swears that Rumsfeld used Caliendo DVDs to torture prisoners at Guantanamo Bay. He’ll fight anyone who brings up Caliendo’s name, and he will fight dirty.
Most of America agrees, it seems. With John Madden and George W. Bush having shuffled off into retirement, Caliendo’s two big go-to impressions have also vanished. So what’s a one-dimensional entertainer to do? Well, if you’re Carrot Top or Yakov Smirnoff, you sign a long-term contract with a large hotel-casino to be the house entertainment. Except that Carrot Top (The Luxor in Vegas) and Smirnoff (his own theater in Branson, Missouri) perform in relatively prestigous venues. Caliendo, meanwhile, is stuck in …
Welcome to the Monte Carlo in Las Vegas, where Caliendo has just signed a 10-year deal to appear every freaking night.
I’m not sure what Hell is like, but it couldn’t be worse than an eternity of blue-haired women yelling from the audience, “Ooohh, do Madden! Do Madden!”
YAHOO has the details, as you knew they would.
“I’m excited to call Monte Carlo my new home,” said Caliendo. “This is Vegas, so this show is going to be bigger and have a higher production value than traditional stand up. I’ve got a live band, we’ll have video segments and maybe even some guest appearances. It’s going to have all of the excitement of a TV show but it will be live on-stage and no two shows will be exactly alike.”
Didn’t it seem like just last week that “Frank TV” debuted to great fanfare, and Caliendo was appearing on Letterman or Leno every other night? MADtv, “The Comebacks” … the world was his oyster (now available here).
And Frank doesn’t even seem to be the top act at Monte Carlo. That honor would be reserved for Master Magician Lance Burton. But here’s a post script. A couple of comedian friends of mine think that this is, in a way, the smart move on Caliendo’s part. It’s easy money, and if Caliendo is married or in a serious relationship, the best way to keep that intact is to NOT go out on the road. “A” venue or not, there are some things that are more important.
Thanks folks. Enjoy the buffet.