Comedian Jay Leno entertained a sold-out crowd at Anselmo Valencia Amphitheater on Dec. 28. There was an air of familiarity as soon as Leno took the stage. After all, he was invited into America’s households for some 4600 nights. Between 1992 and 2014, he was the king of monologue comedy. Leno’s was the last face America saw before going to sleep. On weekends, Leno traveled across the country to perform stand up comedy at clubs and casinos.
Leno still performs approximately 200 shows a year since his retirement. Leno owns approximately 286 vehicles. He has managed to take his car-collecting hobby to the next level by creating a television series called Jay Leno’s Garage on CNBC.
There was no opening act for the evening. Leno took the stage with what seemed to be a Tonight Show extended monologue. It was going to be interesting to see Leno performing without the restrictions of being on network television. Here are some things that AXS noticed about the performance.
1. There were no four-letter words used during the two-hour performance. Leno talked about sex, but without the expletives that are typically used in live comedy.
2. A wide variety of subjects were covered from masturbation, airline travel, pharmaceutical ads, bacon flavored condoms, explosive diarrhea, obesity, edible underwear to the church confessional.
3. Hugh Hefner, Bill Clinton, General Petraeus, Hillary Clinton, Matt Lauer, Al Roker, Margaret Thatcher, Charlie Rose, Harvey Weinstein, Charlie Sheen, Willie Nelson, Kanye West, and Anthony Weiner were subjects of Leno’s one-liners. “Bill Clinton was the trailblazer.” Leno explained, “I’m trying to piss-off everybody.”
4. Examples of Jay Leno’s one-liners include “Trans fats are the fats that are lipo-suctioned off of transsexuals.” And the “pick up lines given by priests include “I must have died and gone to heaven.”
5. The most interesting part of the performance was when Leno shifted from the quips and formal script of the show and started talking about his Italian heritage. Overall, much of the material seemed dated. The comedic edge of Chris Rock, Amy Schumer, or Kevin Hart was missing. That said, Jay Leno was a crowd pleaser from start to finish. His relentless, fast-talking style of delivery reinforced the notion that he is one of the hardest working people in show business.