Laugh Trek

Don't Wreck Yourself. Laugh Trek yourself.

Just ‘Four Laughs’ on Star Trek with comedian Joe DeRosa

Looking for a sure fire comedian?  Joe DeRosa will make you laugh.  The Pennsylvania native is a veteran stand-up comedian, actor, writer and musician.  He’s been featured in films and on television, with roles in such hit shows as AMC’s ‘Better Call Saul’ – and he even voices a character in the video game, Grand Theft Auto V, playing Rufus Bellows.  DeRosa is a sci-fi, fantasy and horror fan, so asking him these four laughs on Star Trek comedy was a perfectly natural thing to do.  Joe’s latest project is a podcast focusing on the darkest delights of horror, the cosmic wonder of sci-fi and the awe inspiring fable of fantasy, called, “We’ll See You In Hell” – available on Starburns Audio.

What is the funniest Star Trek – original Kirk’s Enterprise, Next Generation with Picard, Deep Space Nine with Sisko, Voyager with Captain Janeway, Captain. Archer’s Enterprise or newest incarnation, CBS All Access Discovery?

I think the funniest Star Trek cast is the original cast. I don’t think they were really able to capture – I mean the other casts are great, and they’ve got a great dynamic, but I don’t think they were able to capture the same levels of humor that the original cast was able to capture, particularly between Bones, Kirk and Spock.

Kirk, Spock & Bones
Kirk, Spock & Bones

Pick a favorite, funny Star Trek episode.  Why does it work comically?  Fans love ‘Trouble With Tribbles’ or ‘I, Mudd’ or ‘Mudd’s Women’ – or unintentionally funny ones, such as ‘Spock’s Brain’ or ‘Way To Eden’  (if you’d rather pick funniest film)

The funniest Star Trek episode to me, well, I’d have to actually go to a movie on this one.  Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home is the funniest, you know, Star Trek thing.  

Starfleet Cadet Review
A Cadet Review from Voyage Home

They just do a great job with it.  I’m amazed at how much a Star Trek movie it is, and yet how much a true comedy it is.  Every time I watch it, it blows me away that they were able to pull that off, because they never really done that yet.  They had done quirky things on the TV show here and there. And they had moments of humor throughout the TV show and the movies.  But the fact that they came in and said, “Look, the last one was super dark, this one’s going to be a straight-up comedy.” And it worked.  It’s crazy.

Who’s the funniest Star Trek character?  Dry, logical wit of Spock?  Charismatic player Kirk?  Noble, intellectualism of the polished Picard?  Playful mischief of Riker?  Klingon whimsy of Worf?

Funniest Star Trek character is Bones.  I mean there’s nobody funnier than Bones. Nobody.  

My favorite Bone’s line is from Star Trek IV, when he’s in the hospital and he goes, ‘It’s like the goddamn Dark Ages in here!’  He’s just the best. He’s the best. He’s so funny.

Bones The Healer
Bones The Healer Of The Future

How does Trek work for you as a fan, and, in a more analytic way and more careful exploration, as a professional comedian?  Bottom line: What’s so damn funny about Star Trek?

Trek works for me as a fan in… not as a comedian really, but I guess analytically is probably the best way it works for me.  

It’s a great commentary on The Human Condition.  It’s a great social commentary.  It’s a great sort of speculation of where we might be headed at some point, and because of that it captures humanity at its best and at its worst, and because of that, a lot of the times it’s very funny.

Joe DeRosa
Joe DeRosa