Pop Culture Club

Our introduction to Dane Cook came abruptly one night, when, out of boredom or curiosity, we turned to Saturday Night Live and watched in amazement as the host, a fairly normal-looking, frattish-type man, energetically described flicking a cashew off his erect penis. The monologue went on for some time -- longer than usual and to uproarious audience laughter -- and we felt a harrowing sense of disconnect from popular culture. Who was this man, we lamented, and how had he ascended to such heights without our knowing?

Cook now haunts us at every turn, whether it’s ads for postseason baseball or movie posters with Jessica Alba. The comedian will entertain the youth of America with jokes about "chicken sangwiches" and Super Mario Brothers.
Thu., Dec. 6, 7 p.m., 2007

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Niamh Wallace