Like prop comics, ventriloquists, and comedy teams, character-comics like Judah have been pushed to the fringes. After Lenny Bruce (and later Carlin, Pryor, and Hicks), we’ve come to expect a sort of sincerity and vulnerability from our comics that just isn’t compatible with some of the older, sillier forms of stand-up. Sure, a few like Larry the Cable Guy have survived (possibly because much of his audience fails to recognize his character as a work of fiction), but they’re few and far between.
Judah’s entire act, done completely in character as the “World Champion,” consists of the peculiar-looking man in over-sized glasses and a trucker hat listing his inflated achievements. If that premise sounds thin, it is, but the fact that he’s able to keep it consistently funny and fresh is a testament to what a good writer he is. Like Paul Reubens did with Pee Wee Herman, Judah is able to do a lot with a simple premise and a great delivery.
His rigid adherence to his shtick, coupled with the fact that he’s actually a very talented actor, seems like he’s practically begging to have a show made about the World Champ, but he’s stayed committed to stand-up and the New York scene.
Despite some good TV credits, he’s never recorded an album or special, so he can be a bit hard to find, but if you get the chance, it’s definitely worth it.