Christopher Titus: Love is Evol Apr 9, 2014 16:38:02 GMT -5 via mobile
Post by StevePulaski on Apr 9, 2014 16:38:02 GMT -5
Christopher Titus: Love is Evol (2009)
Directed by: Manny Rodriguez
Directed by: Manny Rodriguez
Christopher Titus: Love is Evol is one of the best comedy specials I have yet to see. It's insightful, allows for self-contemplation, includes more than just the random, one-note jokes and one-liners, relatable, heartbreaking, and uncontrollably funny almost too often. The only flaw is it's not another hour longer.
Titus, while not quite a household name, has made a name for himself by appearing on his own, self-titled sitcom, appeared in several films, with roles both big and small, and has done a couple comedy specials showcasing his abilities at stand-up. With his stand up specials, he demonstrates a remarkable quick-wittedness, has no microphone, giving a more formal, one-man-show vibe, and throws in incredible physical comedy to go along with his verbal banter.
The special predominately concerns Titus's divorce to his ex-wife Erin Camden (referred to as "Kate" in this special for legal reasons). Titus hits the ground running, saying, "if you're in here and you've never contemplated suicide, you've never truly been in love. If you're in here and you've never contemplated murder, you've never been divorced." Titus filed for divorce from Camden on June 6, 2006 (6/6/06), after what he clearly states to have been a mercilessly taxing marriage (physically, mentally, and financially), stating how he suffered abuse of every kind and desperately struggled to continue on with his life leading up to and during the divorce.
Through this hellish experience, Titus doesn't just offer his own personal story but offers insight as to why he believes that people stay in relationships that are troublesome, difficult, and even abusive and that's for the idea and the conception of love. We want someone to be us when we grow old and become frail, and the idea of love means more to many of us than any dollar amount or any tangible item out there. Titus explains how we won't tolerate a little incorrect addition or subtraction in our Starbucks latte but we'll tolerate a relationship that isn't meant to be, when we know it isn't, for years and years just to please our own personal conception of love.
Even as the special occasionally descends into dark instances, with Titus clearly being emotionally affected by some of the incidents, the last thing he seems to want to do is to make this comedy special depressing or saddening in any way. To combat instances that provide a dark outlook, Titus does what he does best and that's infuse these little instances with absurd but funny jabs that simply need to be seen in order to be appreciated. Judging by the way Titus handles his pacing, his delivery, and his gags, it seems that Titus has had all these thoughts, insecurities, and frustrations boiling inside him for so long he needed to get them out as soon as he could. What we witness with Love is Evol is Titus boiling over and lashing out; to call his behavior "mean-spirited" at times would only be complimenting Titus. He has no quibbles about what he says about his ex-wife. He makes you really think how much you may hate yours.
Hilarity only continues to ensue when Titus brings out his alter ego he has labeled "the inner-retard," which he claims all of us have. "The inner-retard" is the personification of ones low self-esteem, reminding us of our failures, our shortcomings, and reminding us of the worst when we're trying to expect the best. Titus's impression of "the inner-retard" is absolutely hysterical, providing us with one relatable instance after another in an ecstatically confident way.
Towards the middle and the end of the special, Titus says better days are on the horizon, as he has found a new, younger woman who he claims is fabulous and a wonderful person to be around. During these segments, Titus provides us with commentary on how the mysterious ways of a woman do nothing but irritate and confuse a man, as he says many of us are so straight-forward and women are anything but. He states how they're the only people to reply to the question "where do you want to do?" with "I am not my mother!" and it's totally acceptable. He states that mixed signals and not saying what you want or how you really feel is what is killing relationships between two rational people, left and right. Titus reflects on how his ex-wife responded to a collective conversation by stabbing him in the torso, and any attempt at a civil conversation with her was practically out of the question from the get-go.
It's almost overwhelming how much substance there is in Love is Evol, emotionally and comically. The film provides the audience with a firsthand account of how affecting and heart wrenching it is to go through a divorce, much less one that was preceded by an abusive relationship. I hesitate my huge recommendation for couples, however. Like Titus fittingly tells us from the start, "what I'm about to say will either fix your relationship or destroy it; either way, you're welcome."
Starring: Christopher Titus. Directed by: Manny Rodriguez.