“Um, hi, you don’t look the same, either,” Bobcat Goldthwait announced upon taking the stage at Friday’s Bubbling with Laughter show. Though he was due on much earlier, the former Jimmy Kimmel Live director (in Montreal promoting the Canadian premiere of his Robin Williams-starring World’s Greatest Dad) ended up in the penultimate spot after a phone call to his hotel room informed him the show he thought was tomorrow was currently underway.
With the same eardrum-splintering voice but shorter hair, the once-retired stand-up also relied on some old material: Having a woman approach him to say, “I don’t mean to insult you, but you look like Bobcat Goldthwait” and relating a story from the set of Blow in which he asked Johnny Depp and Paul Reubens who amongst them was not on probation.
Fortunately sandwiched in between was some eye-openingly introspective stuff about his return to the live stage (“There’s a connection I make with the audience that in the other things I do…I ran out of money, ladies and gentlemen!”) and a transfixing story about being trapped on a plummeting airplane with a team of Special Olympics athletes. None of it was particularly hilarious, and was in fact reliably hesitant and stuttery, but it definitively marked what could be a more personally revealing direction. Then he blew the light, admitted to stealing his entire act from Sesame Street‘s Grover and left no question that yes, the same old Bobcat had returned.