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Comedy review: Aziz Ansari at Abravanel Hall
First Published May 08 2013 05:48 pm • Last Updated May 08 2013 05:48 pm

When it comes to reviewing comedy, only one thing really matters.

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Was it funny?

And yes, "Parks and Recreation" and "Human Giant" star Aziz Ansari was often hilarious during his headlining , well-attended stand-up performance Tuesday evening at the home of the Utah Symphony, Abravanel Hall.

But I still left feeling disappointed.

Ansari's portrayal of the narcissistic Tom Haverford is by far the best part of "Parks and Recreation," and I always watch the show thinking that the show should focus more on him and less on the increasingly unfunny lead of the show, Amy Poehler. But I learned that a little Ansari goes a long way, and although an 80-minute set was generous, I kept looking at my watch as the show dragged on.


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Ansari has a compelling stage presence, and some bits (highlights included the recounting of a time he sent a picture of his genitalia to another woman, and a piece that dissected the conversational difference between a boring married couple and a threesome) were comic gold, and connected with the youngest crowd I have ever seen inside the chandeliered Abravanel Hall.

His set focused on dating, marriage and kids, and he is favor of none of those, saying that if there was a show on MTV called "25 and Pregnant" — a play on the real show "16 and Pregnant" — he would still see the subjects on the show as pitiful and not knowing what they were in for. To paraphrase, here are some of the more popular bits:

• "I was the cutest kid ever. Who doesn't want to f___ that? I never got molested once."

• He was confused about why people who have known each other for two years or less would ever get hitched. "Did you lose a bet?"

• He said when he encounters those who are opposed to inter-racial dating, he yelled that he was f____ white girls every night.

• He riffed on people with chain wallets, whom should never have children.

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