going to hell

Going to Hell at Helium Comedy Club


Comedy is a minefield, right? Where every joke is a step more explosive than the last? Helium Comedy Club on Sansom Street tests the theory with its new monthly standup series, Going to Hell.

Philadelphia-based stand-up comedians and event curators Brian Six and Ryan Shaner are looking to exploit that propellent danger by hosting and bringing monthly lineups of their favorite, least risk-averse comics to Philadelphia’s Helium Comedy Club on Sansom Street (avoid the pothole in the center of the block, yo!). With Wednesday, February 23 as their first “Going to Hell” event, the curators promise that “if you like clean comedy shows, this is not for you. These comics will definitely have you laughing at jokes that will make you think, ‘I’m going to hell’.” 

You have been warned.

Brian Six explains to dM just how hot his Hell can be.

A.D. Amorosi: I do not know if I think of you as a political comedian or even necessarily, a socially conscious one. Do you feel as if the last several years have made it so that a comic has to take sides, socially and politically?
Brian Six: I think a lot of comics do think that and did take sides. I am not one of them. If they have strong feelings about certain issues, then I understand why they want to use their platform to express their opinions. I’ve never, and will never make politics a focus in my stand up. I don’t follow it enough, and I’ve always believed if you’re going to speak about something that’s a serious issue, you should know the whole story so you can speak to any side of the argument. 

A.D. Amorosi: I know and doubt that you are for any form of cancel culture. But, overall what are your thoughts on navigating comedy in a left versus right world with yellow lights such as being canceled to slow or stop you? I mean… I know that you guys traffic in “dirty” and “wrong” but how dirty is dirty and how wrong is wrong? 
Brian Six: The comics that are booked for Going To Hell are not specifically “dirty comics”. They are more established and are aware of what’s the line when they’re joking about certain topics. That’s why they are more established. They’re good enough now to push certain things, but in a way that keeps it comical. 

going to hell
Comedian Brian Six

A.D. Amorosi: Have you ever had an audience rail at any of your comments in the last two years that was surprising as to its intolerance? Anything that you can do or say to recall the specifics of the moment?
Brian Six: No, nothing I talk about in my comedy would really set anyone off. I like talking about things that have happened within my family, my close circle of friends, and pretty basic everyday things. 

A.D. Amorosi: How and why did you hook up with Ryan Shaner in the first place?
Brian Six: Shaner was running the Raven Lounge with a crew of comics when I first met him. After they made the move up to NYC, me and Shaner were hanging out more, started the podcast, then most recently brought back “the dirty show” and renamed it “Going To Hell”.

going to hell
Comedian Ryan Shaner

A.D. Amorosi: With that the sort of level of live curation, what lead you to this month’s grouping of comedians? Shawn Gardini, Tim Butterly, Sidney Gantt, Zac Amico, Mike Recine and Luis J. Gomez?
Brian Six: When we took on Going To Hell we wanted to keep the format simple, and effective. In the last few years, there’s been a lack of stand up showcases that comics coming up in the scene can really watch and say, “that’s the show I need to get booked on.” Obviously, getting good enough to be passed at the clubs is their focus, but this show lets them see established comics from out of town perform. I’ve been lucky enough to fall into a great group of friends that have been a massive help. So basically, Going To Hell will be the monthly show we bring in a few headliners from out of town, combined with local comics we think deserve the shot of being on the show and will benefit from it.

going to hell


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