02/11/16 2:48pm
One of the most popular @BrooklynCartoons. Via Emmet Truxes.

One of the most popular @BrooklynCartoons. Cartoon by Emmet Truxes.

The New Yorker is as famous for its cartoons as it is for inexplicably giving Andy Borowitz a platform to write his terribly lazy attempts at jokes. They’re usually wry and offer up commentary on the state of the modern world, a one-panel parable about the things that distract us or the ways we act. It’s also fair to say New Yorker cartoons appeal to a slightly older, more buttoned-down demographic: the people who need a chuckle in between reading about ethnic strife in Turkey.

Emmet Truxes grew up a fan of those New Yorker cartoons, reading them along with Calvin and Hobbes and The Far Side. A few years ago while living in Brooklyn, he got the inspiration to make his own versions — except instead of the board rooms and family meals often parodied in the New Yorker panels, it was bars and cramped apartments; instead of business suits and bickering spouses it was dudes with beards and people with their faces glued to smartphones. It found an audience: less than a year after starting his @BrooklynCartoons account, he has 22,000 followers.

“It’s specifically focused on our generation in terms of our content, the settings and people and characters involved,” Truxes, 32, told Brokelyn. And every generation deserves some good parody. (more…)

02/02/16 2:08pm
Via Screenshot.

A guy with a beard walks into an old man bar. Horace and Pete image via screenshot.

Louie CK, one of New York City’s most entertaining humans, surprise dropped the first episode of his new web series Horace & Pete over the weekend. It’s essentially a filmed version of a one-take play, line-flubs, intermission and all, about two brothers who own a dive bar in Brooklyn called Horace and Pete’s, which has been in the family for 100 years. The play/show is great, full of timely references that make it feel like it was filmed that very morning (there’s a discussion about Donald Trump and the caucuses for example). It’s clever, unique entertainment, with a stellar cast and an egg of Louie’s dark humor cracked over Death of a Salesman that matches his move toward more drama.

The crux of the show is the 100-year old-dive bar, its patrons and its place in the modern world. There are two main antagonist elements: a sister (Edie Falco) and her lawyer, who seek common law property rights to sell the bar; and some bearded and banged hipsters, who come into the bar looking for “authenticity.” Yes, using hipsters in your show as villains is almost as common as putting them in your commercials as heroes. But Louis, ever smart, is tackling a real issue here: why do we get so offended by the people who search for “authenticity” in an increasingly homogenous city? (more…)

01/28/16 5:50pm
If only there were a way to fit tiny Jo Firestones in every box.

Now, if only there were a way to fit tiny Jo Firestones in every box.

First, there was Apples to Apples, the game of absurd comparisons. Next, there was Cards Against Humanity, the R-rated Apples reboot for basics. And now, there’s Punderdome, a card game created by Fred and Jo Firestone.

That’s the same Fred and Jo Firestone you know and love, who host the everyone’s favorite pun tournament in Brooklyn, the Punderdome 3000. It comes out in July, but you can pre-order a copy now. There may not be a human clap-o-meter, and the game may have a little more downtime than you’re used to at the live event, but make no mistake about it: this is a pun competition.

“I think it’s pretty playable regardless of your pun skills,” Jo Firestone, 29, told us. “But it’s really good for dads, probably fun for kids, and people our age coming to terms with their nerdy selves.” (more…)

01/22/16 4:14pm
Is it time? It might be time! via Flickr user Nicole Nausek

Is it time? It might be time! via Flickr user Nicole Nausek

Winter storm David Snowie is just about here, and if you live with a roommate, the two of you are about to be faced with a very important decision: to bang while snowed in or not to bang while snowed in. It’s a big decision, and one you shouldn’t make without consulting our carefully constructed quiz on the subject: (more…)

01/20/16 12:04pm
This wistful gaze isn't taking home any awards. via Youtube

This wistful gaze isn’t taking home any awards. via Youtube

The air is abuzz with the recently-announced nominees for the 2016 Oscars — and dubious voter demographics aside, we were all excited to see Brooklyn nominated for best picture. With its deft visual storytelling, impressive performances by starring and supporting actors, and a reasonable dose of borough nostalgia (not to mention depiction of a preferable dating scene for some), the movie doesn’t leave much to be desired by its audiences. But recently, we caught wind of another Brooklyn movie on the indie circuit that quietly made it to the big screen in 2015.

It’s called Brooklyn Bizarre, and it tells the story of an errant French teenager who somehow ends up in BK (without any clothes on) and lands a gig working alongside other Luhrmann-esque misfits at Bushwick’s very own Bizarre Bar. At first description, it sounds pretty raw and exciting; the DVD cover shows two women washing an innocent young man’s body in the shower. Could this be the award-worthy tribute to Brooklyn’s gritty underbelly that we’ve missing? (more…)

01/07/16 2:04pm
At least it'll make you feel like you have choices

At least it’ll make you feel like you have choices

We’re less than a week into the new year, and already you’re probably hating your job even more fiercely than you did in 2015. While we can’t exactly fix that for you (even though we can recommend other options), we can at least try to distract you from suffocating ennui by showing you how much worse you could have it.

It’s all laid out in Choose Your Own Misery, a new adventure series created by two former Onion writers, Mike MacDonald and Jilly Gagnon. The books function just like one of those old Choose Your Own Adventure novels, but they’re set in an office, and the scenarios they use will sound eerily like your 9-to-5.

“Now you’re a grownup,” reads the books’ description. “Grownups have choices, but they don’t have adventures. And no matter what they choose, things tend not to end well.”  (more…)

12/29/15 9:52am

Behold, your herald of spring

Half Waif is a Brooklyn band populated by Nandi Rose Plunkett (Vocals), Zack Levine (Percussion) and Adan Carlo (Bass) who are on the brink of releasing their second full-length album, Probable Depths in April 2016. Their latest single, and first taste of what’s to be expected from the new release, is a song called “Nest” that was recently premiered on Stereogum, and listening to it is as refreshing as splashing cold water in your face after waking up from a sweaty nap on the couch.

If in the right headspace, “Nest” can take you on a mental journey through those first few optimistic days of spring. And yeah, I know that for most of us this winter has been freakishly warm, but spring is still something to look forward to, for all the dewy newness that this song champions. The initial notes of the track conjure images of little chicky beaks poking out of an egg, or an unsuspecting worm inching its way out of wonderfully fresh smelling dirt. You could play this on a loop, take your shoes off, and roll around in the grass until you sprained something and then had to sit under a tree to collect yourself. That’s what I’m getting from this song. Don’t let me be the only one, have a listen and get there yourselves: (more…)

12/22/15 3:54pm

Huh-mans of New York

Have you heard of the band Huh? I had never heard of them until a few weeks ago. I was forwarded an email about them by one of my co-workers which mentioned that they were looking to land a premiere of their single “Burn” off of their upcoming debut EP. I listened to the track, liked it, and immediately wrote the band letting them know that I would be happy to premiere it on Brokelyn. They got back to me moments after my initial email to say that they’d already landed a premiere of it on another site, but that they’d love if I would post it as well. Double (or triple, who knows how many times they sent out the song) pitches to publications for premieres of this nature can often end in ruffled feathers if more than one publication expresses interest, but since I’m a happy-go-lucky person, it all worked out like roses. Huh is an ambitious new band, and that’s respectable. God speed, and good luck. You’re gonna need it.

Here’s the (not premiere) of “Burn” the first single off of Huh’s yet to be titled upcoming EP. (more…)

12/19/15 12:55pm
Fun fact: The show originally started when Brett Davis and Sally Burtnick came to Brooklyn on Rumspringa. They never left. Photo via Facebook

Fun fact: The show originally started when Brett Davis and Sally Burtnick came to Brooklyn on Rumspringa. They never left. Photo via Facebook

For two years running, Shea Stadium, itself an otherwise anonymous warehouse surrounded by other light industrial buildings, has hosted one of Brooklyn’s best monthly comedy shows, The Macaulay Culkin Show. And while the show has nothing to do with America’s beloved child actor, you quickly forget that when hosts Brett Davis and Sally Burtnick draw you into their world of strange characters who just happened to book comics like Bridey Elliot, Chris Gethard, Gary Richardson and Janeane Garofalo to tell jokes in between the chaos that comes out of college poetry professors, professional wrestlers and terrible rappers hosting the show.

The formula has worked, with Davis and Burtnick throwing two massive summer comedy festivals, getting Jon Glaser to come do a stage reading of a screenplay about a young jazz hopeful and the band Chicago called Whenever Possible Forever and making Sunday night something to be excited for. On Sunday, December 20, the pair celebrate the second anniversary of the show with a traditionally jam-packed lineup, so we asked them to give us their favorite moments in the show’s run, what you should know if you want to throw a beloved comedy show and The Macaulay Culkin Show’s unfortunate scheduling problem with WWE pay-per-views. (more…)

12/16/15 11:23am

Why is this waiter angry? You’ll figure it out. Photos by Andre Callot

All credit to the director and actors of How To Get Into Buildings, the new play at the Brick. Without Katherine Brook’s relentless, searching direction and the game performances of her six performers, Trish Harnetiaux’s new show could have been less the fireball catastrophe that (I think) it wants to be, and more an interminable mash of free associative gobbly-gook. That reads meaner than I intend it to though. I liked the writing, I swear, I did. And I enjoyed this show. Why? Well, let’s try to figure that out together. (more…)