By Robin Gracia
Editor in Chief
Pink and green neon lights flashed in rapid succession on the Fox Theater marquis. A line formed around the box office promptly at 7 p.m. to acquire tickets for the visiting comedian. The air was electric as Bakersfield citizens prepared for Christopher Titus to take the stage and deliver laughs with his new tour, “The Angry Pursuit of Happiness”.
This is not Titus’ first time in Bakersfield. In Jan. of 2013, Titus graced the Fox Theater with his “Scarred for Life” tour, which opened to rave reviews and much acclaim. He opened his previous tour saying, “I’m a loser and I can prove it”. He then informed the audience of his tumultuous marriage and subsequent divorce, being tackled by a military German shepherd and the one-sentence utterance to a Fox executive that cost him his $30 million and ultimately led to the cancellation of his show.
For being a self-proclaimed loser, Titus has an extremely devoted following which stems from his extensive screen credits.
According to IMDb.com, Titus has guest-starred in more than 20 different television shows, written seven TV movies and acted as the executive producer and star of his own self-titled show, “Titus,” which was loosely based on his own experiences and dysfunctional family.
“I am so excited to see him again,” said Miguel Reyes, a 28-year-old construction worker. “I listen to his podcast and I am pretty sure I’ve seen every episode of his TV show when it was on Fox. This will be the third time I’ve seen him perform live.”
When the lights dimmed at 8 p.m., the crowd erupted in cheers and screams, eager for the first comic to take stage. Opening for Titus was his wife, Rachel Bradley.
Bradley, who married Titus in August of 2013, claiming to be the evening’s “fluffer”, was everything one would hope a comedienne would be: Personable, relatable and just a touch controversial. Bradley discussed race and gender issues in a manner that had one individual taking a sip of soda spitting it out in a fit of laughter onto the hapless person seated in front of them.
As Bradley exited the stage, people began stirring in their seats waiting for the star of the evening to appear. A few minutes later, he appeared, clad in jeans and a T-shirt, smiling and waiving to his fans.
From the second he stepped on stage, Titus had complete command of the surrounding space, projecting his booming voice into the theater. He poked fun at the government and gun culture, his mortifying relationship with his father and joked about how much he loves performing a “half sold-out show.” His fast delivery and sarcasm secured the fact that Titus is a comedic force to be reckoned with.
After the show, Titus encouraged his fans to line up in the lobby for a meet-and-greet. He prides himself in staying in the venue until he has met, talked with and taken photographs with every person who would like to meet him. Fans carried their box sets of his comedy specials under their arms for his autograph as well as purchased T-shirts and other memorabilia.
“The Angry Pursuit of Happiness” demonstrates that Titus can tap into every day experiences and personas and find the comedy of life. Even after numerous televised comedy specials and stand-up, he’s focused on keeping his fans loyal.
“So many comics do the same act for ten years,” said Titus. “I want to make sure you guys keep coming back. I can’t do a hit song and play it forever. I want new material. I want new stuff. I want to beat back Louis C.K.”
Seeing this powerfully hilarious comedian could not come more highly recommended. Whether you catch his specials on Comedy Central or online, you can catch “The Angry Pursuit of Happiness” when it’s recorded and released this fall.