From: St. Paul Pioneer Press Dispatch*

Date: December 6, 1989

Headline: Comics are Funny, but Tamer, in 'Loons 3'

Author: Lambert, Brian

Page(s): B10

Note: Review of Land O'Loons III


"Land O' Loons 3," (9 tonight, Channel 2) KTCA-TV's more or less annual showcase of local comic talent, moves from the cozier environs of years past to the station's snazzy new TeleCenter studios in downtown St. Paul. Exchanged for audiences of well-primed club hoppers and hipsters is a rather more sedate crowd of public-TV members and well-upholstered corporate benefactors. The effect is obvious.

The move isn't necessarily permanent, and it had more to do with KTCA's desire to stage a benefit and show off its new facility than anything else. But the humor of host Jeff Cesario and comics Lizz Winstead, Joe Keys, Susan Norfleet and Joel Hodgson must have played to looser collections of people.

Unlike last year, when KTCA dropped in music by the vocal group Moore by Four, this year's show is stand-up from beginning to end, with time out only for some backstage video of the cast getting made up and talking about their peculiar lives and--of course--a plea for donations for public television by Cesario.

Of the five [comics], Norfleet clicks best. Opening as a country-Western character threatening to sing a song she wrote about her husband dying at a Christian amusement park, she was the most involved with her material. (In Hodgson's case, of course, his dazed uninvolvement is part of the joke.)

And Hodgson closes the hour with his prop bag cluttered with generic Rubik's cubes, tin foil face masks, a piece of medieval torture he calls a "Chiro Gyro" (which he wears over his head) and a bit that requires an audience member to squirt him with a turkey baster while he tries to juggle water.