Rob Delaney is an American stand up comedian and writer, arguably most well-known for his brilliant Twitter presence. His comedy style is confident and self-assured yet openly, and charmingly, flawed. Rob has the stage presence of an every-man’s man; someone who speaks what the majority of us want to say, but don’t have the platform to do so. Quite often we see comedians that seem distant from their audience, superior even, but with Delaney it feels as though everyone is on the same level, in a similar way to the style of Tony Law, for example.
The story of the Titanic speaks to me because I once tripped over a bag of ice at a party & then killed over 1,500 people.
— rob delaney (@robdelaney) April 14, 2012
Rob is very open about negative past experiences in his life, including an event that he claims clearly separates his life into two parts: a horrendous car crash that occurred around thirteen years ago where he ended up breaking both of his arms and having “knees that were ripped open to the bone”.
Now I am merely a sixteen year old girl, and I admit I know a minuscule amount about the world, especially about the world of drugs and alcohol addiction Delaney talks about here, but even I can see that here we have someone that was able to turn his life around and create something from his struggles. And just to add another layer of pretentious analysis: surely that’s what art is.
Guns don’t kill people. People who say “Guns don’t kill people” kill people. With guns.
— rob delaney (@robdelaney) July 20, 2012
With his often intentionally ambiguous material, it isn’t always clear as to what direction a joke or concept is heading, and this enables Delaney to shock and even unsettle his audiences. A brilliant example of this would be his short piece about homophobia, where he talks as if he is “one of them” but has been “cured”, which would obviously put your regular audience member on edge immediately. And he is well aware of this.
As soon as it becomes apparent that the comic is satirising a concept rather than condoning it, it suddenly feels as though everything is right with the world again. It seems to be that an audience can trust this man to lead them to safety, whilst still teetering on the edge of danger throughout.