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Paul Reiser On Life, Comedy & Getting Older

Dmitry Bocharov
Paul Reiser will perform at the Pabst Theater on Saturday, July 27th.

If the only thing he was known for was the TV show Mad About You, Paul Reiser could still hold his head high. That 90s hit, recently rebooted as a sequel starring the same cast, put the comedian, actor, and writer firmly in the cultural spotlight. Reiser's career has continued to grow, recently landing him a role on the second season of Stranger Things.

Reiser says the great thing about comedy is that it's uncomplicated: "Not easy, but uncomplicated in that you just think of funny things, you get them as clear as you can, and then you tell people, and they laugh and then you all drive home ... I find that so refreshing." 

Reiser started doing stand-up early in his career, but took a break to do other things. And he says that even though style and content has changed, comedy itself hasn't.

"Yes, the political landscape has changed, the social landscape has changed, " he says. "But the art of doing stand up is pleasantly one of the few things that can’t change. It’s so low tech: there’s no app for it, there’s no way to turbo charge it. It’s just elbow grease and human effort."

Reiser says he's grown as a writer, comedian, and actor as he's gotten older but that doesn't mean he's any wiser:

"You know, I do this line in my act: 'As you get older, you get more comfortable. People often call it wisdom, but the truth is: I don't think that we've learned anything new, I just think that we've stopped caring that we haven't learned anything new."

Comedian, actor, and writer Paul Reiser will perform his stand up routine in Milwaukee Saturday, July 27th at the Pabst Theatre.


Bonnie North
Bonnie joined WUWM in March 2006 as the Arts Producer of the locally produced weekday magazine program Lake Effect.