It was a slow night at Rick Bronson's House of Comedy with less than 50 semi-frozen patrons and opening acts struggling to land laughs. Then headliner Rip Michaels barreled onto the stage.
Michaels, best known for his work on MTV's sketch comedy series, "Nick Cannon Presents: Wild 'N Out," acted Thursday night as if he had just sold out Madison Square Garden, livening up the "crowd" with a raunchy sing-along, followed by the kind of high energy that probably didn't require a mike.
At one point, Michaels brought up three women in the audience who were celebrating birthdays and bought them vodka shots in exchange for them doing their best impressions of strippers. No nudity was involved, but Michaels did "make it rain" after the third woman drew cheers for her slow burn.
It could have just been Amateur Night at Crazy Girls, but Michaels also used his 40-minute set to mix in personal material about the travails of being the single father of a 12-year-old daughter and how white kids receive the most severe forms of corporate discipline.
"Black kids get hit. White kids go missing," he said. "I've heard of a Amber Alert, but you never hear of a Shaquana Alert."
Michaels will be at the MOA's House of Comedy through Sunday. His new special is now streaming on Kevin Hart's LOL Network on YouTube.