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Review: T.J. Miller brings a fresh and funny set

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Comedian T.J. Miller proved why he was named one of Entertainment Weekly’s next big things in comedy Friday night with a funny and fresh blend of observational stand-up comedy and impressions.

Miller started his act by riffing on the set of the Footlight Players’ Theatre with its Victorian style fireplace and empty bookshelf, or as Miller called it, a “library for illiterates” and talking about his experience traveling to Charleston, the airport and the “smell of the South.” We think he meant the smell of pluff mud.

Miller’s ability to improvise is clearly one of his biggest comedic strengths, and he had several funny audience interactions, playfully chastising some for tipping over their empty beer bottles and poking fun at various people throughout the show.

But the biggest breakthrough moment came about halfway through the performance when an audience member asked Miller if he was going to do any “prepared material.” Miller quickly dressed down the local legal assistant by unleashing a hilarious string of good-natured barbs, relentlessly poking fun at the heckler, whom he ultimately brought up onstage and involved in a funny challenge to fit inside the fireplace on the set.

Opening act Team Submarine did a nice job warming up the crowd with several funny sketches including one about the dangers of sexting and another about truth or dare. The two -man team worked together well, deftly walking the line between cerebral humor and lowbrow comedy.

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