Hannibal Buress

Jonathan Zeller

Hannibal Buress—a soft-spoken, clever Illinoisan—writes for Saturday Night Live. You may have also seen him on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, on which he wondered how men with handlebar mustaches could have normal conversations. He hosts a stand-up comedy show on Sundays at 9pm at the Knitting Factory.

The hypothetical person might say, "I'm busy. I can't see every two-bit comedy act in this town. Why should I go to your show at the Knitting Factory?"
Hannibal Buress: Because I said so.

You can do better than that.
We have good guests, and it's fun. If somebody doesn't want to go, then they should stay home. But if they want to go, they should come to this show. And it's free. There are no fights, and nobody brandishes knives at my comedy show. Sometimes we have a dude pre-show just drumming on a bucket.

[Disappointed] No.

What was your worst-ever bomb of a show?
I don't like this interview anymore. I got carried offstage before. It was an Apollo-style comedy show, and the guy who did it was actually a friend of mine. Pseudo-friend, I guess. People started booing a little bit, and he was playing the sandman—the guy who dances people off—but he started creeping toward the stage and thought it would be cool to carry me off. That was in Carbondale, Illinois, where I went to college.

What's your favorite club in the City?
There's a few. As a straight-up comedy club, I like Comix. One of my favorite shows to perform is at Union Hall—Tearing the Veil of Maya, Eugene Mirman's show, which is also on Sundays. And performing at UCB [Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre] is always fun.

Do you think Knitting Factory will get mad at you for promoting your Sunday-night-comedy archrival?
No! Everybody can have a good show on Sunday. We're not archrivals. I'm doing that show, actually, before I do my show this upcoming Sunday. [Editor's note: The show in reference has already passed.] So everything's still cool. We're in totally different parts of Brooklyn, you know what I mean? Park Slope and Williamsburg.

You've been writing for Saturday Night Live lately. Do you have a favorite contribution you've made to the show so far?
Yeah—the Charles Barkley golf sketch.