Brooklyn’s 50 Funniest People: Sam Taggart

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Sam Taggart
The Brooklyn comedy scene has blessedly become less bro-centric and straight dude-focused, and Sam Taggart is one of the guys directly responsible for it. Along with Bowen Yang, Taggart conceived and produced the Sex and the City-inspired Live on Broadgay and the gay teen “drama” series Lake Homo High (with more of an emphasis on melodrama played for the utmost campiest effect). Sure, the titles might not evoke sophisticated, highbrow affairs—Oscar Wilde it’s not. But like the most deliciously decadent items in Wilde’s oeuvre, Taggart’s comic endeavors are unapologetically, and hilariously, gay. And there’s something to be said for the weirder side of the queer experience as opposed to the average, cookie-cutter Hells Kitchen variety. It’s a nice, and necessary, antidote to the sort of gay-themed cultural properties that’s mostly intended for straight female eyeballs.
When was the first time you remember making someone laugh? What happened?
I saw a crawfish in a creek and screamed. My cousins laughed at me. I don’t know if that counts.
What is the toughest part about being on the comedy scene in Brooklyn today? What is the best?
The best part is that everyone’s pretty supportive of new and inventive comedy. People sometimes talk about The Old Days when you had to have a tough skin to survive in the scene among the other rough n tough comedians. That sounds so bad to me. Comedy is fun. And should be supportive. And the best comedy comes out of people’s ideas being supported. And that’s where we are now. Wow. I’m running in circles.

Toughest part??? Hmmmm. There’s a lot of people. And some of those people aren’t that good at comedy and their names are—Wow could you imagine if I did that for real? Just started trash talking people in print. Especially right after saying how important it is to be supportive. Wow. That would be truly insane. But really there is just a lot going on and a lot of it is really, really good so you constantly feel like you missed the best show of your life.

Who do you find funny?
I generally go for the comedians who choose bits n goofs over truth telling and honesty. As far as people in Brooklyn go, I’ve been doing stuff with Mary Houlihan, Julio Torres, Joe Rumrill, and Bowen Yang for a while now and think they’re all so, so funny.
Famous people wise? I loved Sarah Silverman growing up. She is so silly it’s out of this world. There was this one scene in her show (The Sarah Silverman Program) that was basically a bonus scene, but she sang the words “Even Though I’m Using Your Head As A Mic, I Love You” into her dog’s head and there was an affect on it to make it sound like it was an actual mic. It was the funniest thing I’ve ever seen and it was so simple. I also went through a Chelsea Peretti obsession for a sec. She’s a tru goof. Honestly, The Lonely Island on SNL was huge for me. I looked forward to their stuff desperately and Hot Rod is maybe my favorite comedy of all time? So many critics hated it and I was like “Wow, finally a comedy that GETS IT.”
What was the last time you laughed so hard you cried?
Me and my brother were both very hungover recently and going to get food at a place called “Burger It Up”. He suggested I get a Gatorade to help my hangover. I responded, “I ain’t tryna roll up to Burger It Up with a Gatorade.” As soon as I finished saying it I started laughing and he started laughing and we couldn’t stop. We kept repeating it in different inflections and trying to “unpack” it as if it were important in a literary and historic sense. I ain’t tryna roll up to burger it up with a Gatorade. That’s an insane sentence!!!!! Come on!!!!!! Who says that?! No one thinks this is funny, but I want to do an hour lecture on what this sentence MEANS in the greater cultural context of America.
What are your goals for your comedy career?
When most people ask me that I say “Tryna blow up and host the Globes.” But more specifically I’m trying make very silly and funny things with people I like for ever-increasing audience sizes and eventually blow up and host the globes.
And finally: What is your favorite knock-knock (or otherwise goofy) joke?
Q: If you have 8 oranges in one hand and 7 oranges in the other, what do you have?
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A:  Big Hands.
To see 49 more of Brooklyn’s funniest people, click here.
Photo by Nicolas Maloof.

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