Nationally known comic comes to Mugsy’s

By Gus Bode

Columbia graduate jokes about stupidity, college life

Twenty-two points, plus triple-word-score, plus fifty points for using all my letters. Game’s over. I’m outta here.FACTOID:For more information about Steve Hofstetter, go to

Steve Hofstetter is a traveling standup comedian coming to the Mugsy McGuire’s Entertainment Center Nov. 4 at 7 p.m. Hofstetter writes for Maxim magazine and He has also appeared on the NBC television shows “Ed” and “Law and Order.”


The 25-year-old is touring the country in promotion of his latest book, “Body Shots:a Sarcastic Look at the Best 4-6 Years of Your Life.” The Daily Egyptian caught up with the Hofstetter as he was driving through Northern Mississippi on Nov. 1, on his way to Ohio State University. Although Halloween was last weekend, Hofstetter eerily predicted “something crazy” happening on election night.

Daily Egyptian:What should students at SIU expect from your show Thursday at the Mugsy McGuire entertainment center?

Steve Hofstetter:Definitely a unique experience. I don’t do stock jokes or hack premises. I try to push the envelope as much as possible and I’m more than willing to do material about race, religion and politics – stuff other comics might consider taboo. I get bored with the easy stuff

DE:A few clips on your website seem very political, is that true with a lot of your material?

SH:I wouldn’t say a lot of it, but I definitely go there. Especially in the last couple of weeks I’ve gotten increasingly political because I’ve gotten increasingly frustrated. But because the show at SIU is after Nov. 2, unless something crazy happens – which it might – I don’t know how political I’ll be. I’ll be happy when it’s all over.

DE:Your new book, “Student Body Shots:a sarcastic look at the best 4-6 years of your life,” seems perfect for the stereotypical SIU students. Have you been playing colleges like ours long, or just recently in support of your book?

SH:I actually started on the college circuit, because I write a lot about college life. I love college football, college towns and the sensibility of college students. I feel they are more educated and I love that they are young and fun.


DE:You went to school at Columbia University, is a lot of your material pulled from your experiences in the school, and some of the dumb things you saw?

SH:It’s a combination of things I experienced and things that I saw. If you go through my book, I can go paragraph by paragraph and name the friend that it’s about. All that stuff is true, but the thing that I learned the most about the college tour is that we’re all the same. Every school is 2/3 the same as any other school. It’s just the 1/3 that will be different every time. College is the same because we’re all the same age, we see the same things and we all understand the pressures of relationship, the semester, grades and all the crap we have to deal with at school.

DE:So besides dealing with being politics and being young, what would you say is the main theme of your show?

SH:The main theme is that I can’t stand stupidity. All the tracks on my CD have the word stupid in the name.

DE:What have the responses been like?

SH:The funniest thing about that is when I make fun of stupidity and people in the audience get offended. I think it’s hysterical, because they’re straight up saying, “Hey, I’m dumb.” Even people who are dumb don’t say that often. A couple of weeks ago in Detroit I was having a great set. All of a sudden this woman stood up and yelled, “I thought this was a comedy show!” I think there is a misconception that comedy is supposed to be stupid. I think the best comedy is comedy that makes people think. Don’t get me wrong – if I’m not making people laugh, I’m not doing my job. But there’s nothing wrong with making people think while they laugh.

DE:Do you think most comedy is directed at people who can think?

SH:No. I think there’s a lot more comedy on TV, which is a wonderful thing, but so much of it sucks. I don’t know if fans in Southern Illinois are fans of the Blue Comedy Tour Show, but I can tell you that my humor is not like that. The Blue Collar Tour itself was hysterical, but the show is some of the worst stuff I’ve seen on TV. It’s almost like an insult. My family is blue collar, but that doesn’t mean they laugh at fart jokes.

DE:Does your brand of comedy ever get you in trouble with the audience?

I’m gonna do jokes on every side of the spectrum, and rest assured that if anyone speaks when they are not spoken to in the audience, I am going to rip them apart. I definitely have no tolerance for hecklers, or for anyone who wants to ruin anyone else’s good time. So if anyone yells something at me or decides that I’m funnier than I am, I have to prove them wrong. And I’m going to do it in front of all their friends so they don’t forget it.

DE:And you have the microphone, so you probably stand a better chance against them.

SH:Definitely. I have the microphone, and more importantly I have the training. It’s so dumb when some jerk who paid 10 bucks thinks he is funnier than someone who’s been onstage for years. I never pick on anyone who picks on me, but if someone heckles me I have to tear him or her apart. They have to learn that we have certain freedoms in this country and screwing with a comedian is not one of them.

DE:Is there anything else you our readers to know about your show?

SH:Just come out and support live comedy. More than half the people in America have never seen live comedy before so they don’t understand how good it is. Live comedy is so much better than anything you’ve seen on TV, because you’re there and you watch it develop and frankly most of the editors on TV are terrible. And oh yah, don’t drive through Mississippi, it’s really boring.