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Shout Factory presents
Dana Gould: Let Me Put My Thoughts In You (2008)

“Man, I love ice cream sandwiches!”
- Dana Gould

Review By: Chuck Aliaga  
Published: March 23, 2009

Stars: Dana Gould
Director: Bob Odenkirk

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (adult language)
Run Time: 00h:49m:59s
Release Date: March 24, 2009
UPC: 826663111651
Genre: comedy

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer

DVD Review

Dana Gould is a little-known comedian who could easily pass for a live-action version of Moe from The Simpsons (a show that he, ironically, was a writer for). His name and face might be slightly familiar, given his numerous appearances on the talk show circuit and as “Fragile” Frankie Merman on Seinfeld, but he’s far from a household name. Hopefully, that will change if enough people take a look at Shout! Factory’s new DVD release, Dana Gould: Let Me Put My Thoughts In You. Directed by the great Bob Odenkirk (one half of the duo responsible for Mr. Show), this film captures ex-Comedians of Comedy member Gould’s stand-up performance at Chicago’s Second City Theater in June 2008.

Gould isn’t the right comedian for the Dane Cook crowd, and thank goodness for that. Where low-brow comics like Cook and Jeff Dunham rely on props and obvious humor, Gould’s brand of comedy sneaks up on us. He simply tells stories about things that most of us have either experienced ourselves, or we have seen others go through something similar. While every bit might not seem side-splittingly hilarious at first, Dana’s stories are best when their charm really hits us about five minutes after their told. The audience at this show isn’t exactly rolling in the aisles either, but it’s interesting to pay attention to how their laughter increases as the show progresses.

Some of the best bits involve Dana’s renting of the wrong version of the movie F.I.S.T., his fear of parking garage elevators, and, well, we’ll just call it his "bit about moving to San Francisco." It’s possible to see the punch line of the “F.I.S.T.” bit coming from a mile away, but it’s the matter-of-fact way that it’s delivered that makes it so effective. When he moves on to his unwillingness to get on any elevator in a parking garage, the joke’s effectiveness lies in that his fear makes perfect sense. I guarantee that you’ll at least think twice before boarding such a potential death trap the next time you head to your car. The San Francisco/homosexual joke could have easily gone the route of tired, cliché gay jokes, but Dana infuses this particular bit with an equal amount of heart and humor.

Gould’s ability to relate to a wide audience is even more evident when he talks about his family, which includes a pair of adopted Chinese daughters. This isn’t typical “take my wife please!” stuff, though; he gives us a touching account of how he reacts to those people who think it’s strange for American parents to have children from another country. Don’t get me wrong, Let Me Put My Thoughts In You is far from a feel-good, family-friendly comedy routine. It’s full of plenty of adult humor and language and stories that I doubt you’d want to repeat to your mother anytime soon. Regardless, Dana Gould relies solely on his unerring wit to make us laugh throughout this 50-minute program. What more can you ask from a stand-up comedian, especially in these days of Blue Collar Comedy tours?

Rating for Style: A
Rating for Substance: A


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: The 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen presentation does a fine job handling the unique lighting at this venue, blending blacks and brighter hues quite nicely. The inherent nature of the film isn’t going to make for something to demo your home theater, but there’s still some nice image detail here.

Image Transfer Grade: B


Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishyes
Dolby Digital

Audio Transfer Review: We have the choice between Dolby Digital 5.1 and 2.0 tracks, and both are quite good. The 5.1 mix gets the slight nod, though, thanks to a bit more depth and dynamic range. The dialogue is the most important part of both tracks, and it’s crystal clear regardless of your selection.

Audio Transfer Grade: B


Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 14 cues and remote access
2 Other Trailer(s) featuring Asssscat!, The Passion of Greg the Bunny: Best of the Film Parodies Volume 2
2 Deleted Scenes
Packaging: Keep Case
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: dual

Extra Extras:
  1. The Dana Gould Interview by Bob Odenkirk
  2. Soul Mates – Short film written by Dana Gould
Extras Review: The extras include The Dana Gould Interview by Bob Odenkirk. This seven-minute piece finds the director of Dana Gould: Let Me Put My Thoughts In You talking to the stand-up comedian about various things, including the last time he did a comedy special.

Soul Mates is a 14-minute short film written by Gould that involves a man who loses his wife in a car accident. This is a surprisingly funny, quirky little dark comedy that’s full of some great twists, helping make it one of the better DVD extras you’ll come across.

There’s also a pair of deleted scenes from the stand-up special that run just over four minutes and are very funny.

Extras Grade: B+


Final Comments

A former member of the hipster comedy troupe The Comedians of Comedy, Dana Gould is back on the stand-up comedy circuit after years of TV writing. His first TV special in many years comes to DVD from Shout! Factory, and Dana Gould: Let Me Put My Thoughts In You proves to be well worth the wait, as it offers nearly an hour of hilarious, reflective, and original life stories.


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