Originally published on Trevor Trove on June 1-7, 2017
Kinda Funny Live is nearly upon us once again. And – as with years past – a number of fans have descended upon San Francisco in advance of the proper event to enjoy each other’s company and form new friendships.
My day started similarly to many of the friends I chatted with today – with virtually no sleep. It seemed practically everyone I talked to today got almost no sleep en route to San Francisco, unable to sleep within the confined space of their plane rides or (like me) too excited to fall asleep the night before.
I happened to share an early morning flight out of Sky Harbor with fellow Kinda Funny friend Cameron Abbott. As we waited for our flight to begin boarding, we tested the multiplayer functionality of my Nintendo Switch. We played Ultra Street Fighter 2 for a little while before switching over to Mario Kart 8. This was Cameron’s first time with the system in any form and my first time playing using a single Joy-Con control scheme. Street Fighter is serviceable as both characters are sharing the same battle screen but Mario Kart split screen on the Switch’s small screen, combined with the terrible controls of a single Joy-Con control (namely the barely there trigger buttons) was a really rough experience. We managed, but it is easily the worst way to play the system.
Anyway, our flight eventually started to board and I let Cameron continue playing the Switch single-player while I started Oceanhorn on the Vita. Initial impressions have it playing very similar to the PlayStation 4 last year. I didn’t explore too much because I spent the flight trying to get a little bit of sleep instead. Once we landed, Cameron and I grabbed our luggage and hung around to meet up with Brandon Gann and eventually Jonathan “Xyger” Landeros.
Brandon sent me an email following Kinda Funny Live 2 asking if I had any recommendations for getting involved in the community. That singular correspondence led to a post on Trevor Trove with whatever insight I could provide and fueled a steady online back and forth between Brandon and myself this past year (as well as opened him up to the idea of befriending other creators in the industry like Alex and the team at Irrational Passions. So today also culminated in a year-long friendship finally meeting in person (instead of just tweets back and forth). Cameron, Brandon, and I bonded over our shared passions in the community while we waited for Xyger to arrive. Once he did, the four of us headed off to the hotel.
The afternoon was filled with conversations in our hotel suite, with other members of the community steadily joining us throughout the day: both those who would be staying with us and those staying elsewhere. We all visited and relaxed until we neared the 6 o’clock hour, when a group of the Australian Kinda Funny friends had planned a gathering at one of Greg Miller’s favorite places: Wing Wings.
Everyone in our room caravaned over to Wing Wings to find a sizeable group already enjoying their food and each other’s company. Much like at the very first Kinda Funny Live community meet-up here two years ago, we quickly overwhelmed the tiny store and spilled outside. Probably upwards of fifty people mingled in and outside the location, chatting about favorite Kinda Funny memories and shared interests. It was delightful visiting with the Australian fans who had all come out here more or less together. I also had the pleasure of meeting a family of four from my own geographical neighborhood. Mingling first with the 16-year-old daughter, I was then introduced to her parents and her 12-year-old brother, who all folded this into a family vacation that also included a recent trip to Disneyland/California Adventure and Palo Alto. The notion of a family of four enjoying the content together caught me off guard and I feel bad that I don’t remember their names but the fact that they live in Glendale, another suburb of Phoenix, made me smile.
Eventually, a segment of the audience walked a few doors down to a bar/restaurant. I got to catch up with friend and Kinda Funny Community Manager Joey Noelle for the first real chat since we saw each other for (fellow KF friend) Nikki Petitt’s wedding a month and a half back. We originally met very briefly at the original Kinda Funny Live but have grown closer and closer over the past few years and I loved our small window to catch up as she of course is going head first into the whirlwind of her first Kinda Funny Live as an employee.
Another great conversation came in talking to Logan Wilkinson, an Irrational Passions writer who I first really interacted with at PAX East. We had incredible conversations about Emily Is Away Too, Uncharted 4, and the musical Hamilton and it was an utter joy getting to engage with him in that manner (and thanks to Nato Johnson for coming by to say how much he’d love to see a podcast between the two of us). Also, fuck Ben Bellevue for abandoning us to actually see Hamiltontonight. Jerk!
More conversations ensued, including one where Logan and I got somewhat cornered by a non-Kinda Funny guy who pitched himself as an inventor and builder of dreams. So that was…a pretty good cue to call it a night. Logan and I headed back to our hotel room to join everyone else who had already made the pilgrimage back to base.
As has been a bit of a recurring gag at these events, I helped coordinate a(nother) room of ten people (with one more joining us for the event this weekend). But after reaching a bit of a breaking point at LAST year’s event (with 10 people in a standard hotel room), I have started investing a little bit extra in order to get us a larger hotel room. So while we once again have ten people in here (a wonderful mix of regulars, rare attendees, and first-timers), we’re at least operating in a room with ample bed and floor space.
And I’ve thoroughly enjoyed hearing them (re)connect here in the room as I’ve written up this initial recap. I imagine we’ll continue chatting a little bit further into the evening before finally turning in. A trip to Pier 39 and the Foundry are on the docket for tomorrow. And I can’t wait. We’re still a couple days away from the event proper but there are already so many people connecting and making lasting friendships, and that’s only bound to continue as more and more people arrive.
Hoo-dang I had a good time tonight. Admittedly, I’m probably about seven rum and cokes in as I write up this recap. But today was absolutely a mix of “I love being around all of these people” and “crap, we’re only two days in and I’m exhausted.” But it was fun all around anyway.
The morning started somewhat lackadaisically with the room of ten slowly waking up throughout the morning. Eventually, we all started to stir and prepare for another community day around town. Sometime around noon, we started heading over to Pier 39.
Much like last year, Pier 39 is an ideal spot for a Kinda Funny community meet up. There are a ton of food options for people to split off and attend. So we could meet as a 50+ person group and then shift to smaller groups grabbing lunch at various restaurants scattered around the area. Eventually, a big chunk of us reconvened over by the Sea Lions and mingled for the better part of the afternoon. For hours, people split off and enjoyed small and group conversations, meeting for the first time or reuniting after months apart.
Evenutally, I split off for dinner with a handful of friends over at the 21st Amendment, a favorite bar/restaurant right down the street from IGN. The ride to 21st Amendment was an amusing example of how exhausted some of us already were. Me and four other community members shared an Uber over to the restaurant in complete silence. It’s not that we were angry at one another. Instead, we were collectively introverts and none of us were the kind of person to kick off the conversation. So instead, we all enjoyed our personal time, catching up on personal messages or other social media realms.
Dinner at 21st Amendment was delightful and brought a few friends into the fold who only arrived today. As always, I am blessed by the friends I’ve made within this community. They consistently bring joy and laughter into my life and I often relish these days where we get to catch up.
As we neared 7 o’clock, a handful of us headed over to the 21+ event at the Folsom Street Foundry. At the first Kinda Funny Live, a bunch of us made an impromptu trip to the Foundry for their regular Thursday games night. At Kinda Funny Live 2, a group headed there and were surprised by an appearance by Greg Miller. This year, Kinda Funny had a portion of the standard event reserved for the Kinda Funny community. Namely, the upstairs area was reserved for us. Greg and Gen Miller eventually arrived and were instantly surrounded by a ton of friends in attendance and Greg lived up to his role as king of the meet and greets. He joined in with friends in Rock Band. He had an impromptu rematch tournament in Mario Kart with Xyger. And he bounced around from friend to friend, engaging with each and excitedly listening to what their KFL3 experience was shaping up to be.
The Foundry was filled with incredible conversations that have led to an almost-certain deterioration of my own voice through shouts across the crown and ample alcohol. But the joy found in meeting and reuniting with so many of these friends was entirely worth it and I wouldn’t have it any other way – even if I DO still have a whole extra day before the actual Kinda Funny event even starts.
I’m not as young as I used to be.
Friday started off seemingly fine. I woke up a bit early but wasn’t suffering any kind of hangover symptoms (with rum and cokes as my drink of choice, this has been a regular occurrence as I imagine the caffeine just wakes me up early). So while the rest of my room slept, I recognized this as a prime opportunity to sneak in a shower. Then I went back to bed.
Waking up again sucked.
The hangover hit with a headache and passing bouts of nausea. Roommate Jasmine helped me out with a bit of Advil and I definitely started drinking all of the water I SHOULD had consumed Thursday night. Fortunately, that was as bad as it got, though, and the room collectively started making its way to the day’s first community activity: bottomless mimosas at a place called the Pink Elephant. It was more or less on the way to the center of our afternoon tour of IGN so we collectively chose to walk over there, arriving just after to allotted 11am start time.
Good news: there was a great turnout.
Bad news: the establishment was not expecting 80-100 people to randomly stumble upon it and only had a couple of servers on hand.
This can sometimes feel like the unspoken slogan of these community events: “way more people showed up than expected.” An almost identical scenario happened at the first Kinda Funny Live as a swarm of newly formed friendships descended upon another poor understaffed brunch establishment on the day of the show. They had the room for us but only one waitress on hand so they only took us in in groups of ten to make it slightly more manageable. So I think this will reinforce that we should probably try to better coordinate with the venues in advance next year.
Anyway, I said hello to some of the new faces like Mario (NotBros) Piacquadio before a small group of us decided to bounce to another location. On our way to The Creamery – a small cafe – we came across a separate group that had ventured out for an alternative. The Creamery proved an ideal location for our small contingent as we ordered and paid up front individually and then grabbed a few tables in their spacious outdoor covered seating. Brunch was great and I had a crepe for the first time in probably fifteen years. They also gave us a plate of cookies for the table – which we rejected at first because we hadn’t ordered them – before being told they were on the house. The place immediately shot to the top of a list for future event planning consideration.
While we ate, other groups assembled as places like the 21st Amendment and The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen (as well as the original Pink Elephant location) to spend the time prior to the IGN tour. Because our group was so large, we actually all received emails in the morning notifying us that the group had been split up into Group A – which would attend the regularly scheduled 1pm tour – and Group B – which was bumped back to 2pm. Nearly our entire room was in Group B so we hung out at the Creamery until a little past 1pm. We also inherited friend and Kinda Funny Extra Life team co-captain Lauren Wilson, who had just arrived from Los Angeles. (Shameless plug for Lauren and Fiona – the other co-captain: Join the Kinda Funny Extra Life team. www.kindafunny.com/extralife)
As we arrived at the IGN offices near 1:30pm, there were already some friendly faces in line, but we continued down the street to the 21st Amendment to see the other friends who had convened over there. As always, hugs and smiles ran amuck as many of us continued to embrace the short times we all get to spend with one another in person. Eventually, we headed back to IGN and got in line for the tour, continuing to mingle (or in my case, mostly attempted to quietly recover my voice following Thursday night’s libations and bar-yelling).
Once the tour started, we were split (as usual for a group of this size) into four smaller segments that would effectively tour the office in a round. Kiersten Slader – the extraordinary PR, Marketing, and Events Manager for IGN who helps coordinate these tours (even as she is also coordinating their upcoming E3 logistics) – lead my group. During the tour, Brandon asked me how many times I’ve been through these at this point and I think it was my fifth (Jared Petty kindly gave Sean Pitts and I a tour around Kinda Funny Live 1, PSX 2015, KFL2, IGN 20th Anniversary House Party, and now, KFL3) and while some of it is old hat to me, the context has certainly changed. Following the 20th Anniversary tour, Andrew Goldfarb kindly invited me to stick around and work with Jonathon Dornbush to write and get my first freelance news article published on the site. Over the past two years and change, the people who I look up to at the site have become increasingly familiar and its always a delightful pleasure when the remember me or take the time to reach out and say hi. I would hope anyone with the same aspirations of potentially working there someday would be as fortunate.
As always, the tour ended with all of the groups combining in the lunch room for a big group Q&A with the staff. The obvious highlight of this particular tour was the present of Sean Pitts, Barrett Courtney, and Joshua Mobley on the panel: three members of the Kinda Funny community who have gone from attending tours like today’s to working at the site themselves. Following the Q&A, we repositioned for a big group photo and even sang Happy Birthday to Mike Aransky (who has appeared with Kinda Funny on occasion and has been a personal inspiration with his Classic Aransky YouTube channel and Classic Creators Facebook group).
I said hi to a few more IGN team members and thanked them for their time before heading out to the Grilled Cheese place to meet up with a bunch of the community members again. More conversations and impromptu meetings took place before a group of us headed around the corner to become the living embodiment of the Switch announcement commercial and play Mario Kart in the park. A handful of us brought out our Switches for some racing. In the first wave of races, MarioNotBros and Xyger ended up tying in the point count, with me bring in third place and a couple other friends in the rear. Our second wave was sidelined by connection errors as more people joined. But I WAS winning when I got disconnected in our third race (and somehow my ghost even managed to put up a pretty solid fight against everyone else).
With the connection issues persisting, we started parting ways and headed back to the hotel, grabbing dinner en route as we probably wouldn’t be going elsewhere before the trip back to the Foundry for a Grimecraft performance. I definitely took it way easier on the drinking tonight and made sure to have plenty of water. I got to meet a ton of new faces tonight and even some blasts from the past, including a woman named Tanya who I had forgotten I had checked on at last year’s event when her partner (Mike, I think) had sort of disappeared on her. It was nothing nefarious and the two were absolutely fine but we joked about it a bit over the weekend last year. She remembered and popped over to say hi and introduce me to her friend Maria. It was a small moment but a somewhat incredible one about a small connection I made last year that I had nearly forgotten all about.
I also got to meet Adam and Laura, a couple from San Diego who just got married last week and were celebrating their honeymoon – in part – by attending Kinda Funny Live. Laura was a big fan of my pixel glasses so I dug into my bag and asked her favorite color of the spares I had within, ultimately giving her a pink pair as a wedding gift. Seriously, some of these stories just keep a smile in my heart (even if my innate stoicism might not always show it on my face).
As midnight approached, a bunch of us started heading over to the U.S. premiere of HEEL KICK!, a special event set up with Greg, who co-produced the film. He, and three members of the team were on hand for the event and delivered their own Q&A after the screening. The film was a fun mockumentary about a couple of very amateur indie wrestlers learning that their passion might be a lot more work than they’re prepared for. The Kinda Funny audience was, of course, the best kind of audience for such a film, with incredibly vocal responses from uproarious laughter to groans upon seeing the characters take the intentionally painful bad bumps. It’s not too often you get to attend a premiere like this and it was such a fun crowd and atmosphere, even if it was super late and we all recognized that we have a big day tomorrow.
I joked with Greg as we left the theatre that I had to come back and write about what we all did today and he mentioned in kind that he has to go home and edit the announcement video that will go out on social media for the benefit of everyone who won’t be in attendance. So hopefully, he’s wrapping up right about now as well.
Tomorrow should be something special.
P.S. If you haven’t been following along with @Pixelbrave’s daily video recaps, I highly recommend you do. Just like last year, it has been a pleasure sharing a room with him and watching him edit his videos as I throw together my written recaps. And god bless him, his videos take way more time to put together so he’s usually scraping by on the bare minimum sleep. So definitely check them out.
Kinda Funny Live 3!
Kinda Funny Live Day started this morning with a food trucks event at Spark Social SF, an outdoor dining spot with ample space and seating and a wide variety of food trucks for people to choose from. One of those “ideal for a large group” options, tons of Kinda Funny Best Friends gathered, wandered around looking for their preferred dining options (I settled on Fried Mac & Cheese balls after they were recommended to me by a fellow former Facebook admin). People gathered around the space, mingling and visiting; making predictions about what might happen tonight.
The Kinda Funny Facebook Admins in attendance got together for some group photos. Since stepping down in January, I haven’t been too active in the group (outside of regular lurking) but I still consider many of those people dear friends so I tagged along and jokingly tried to photo bomb their picture with a middle finger (in honor of a meme generated out of last year’s Let’s Play Live, where Joey Noelle, Lauren Wilson, and I flipped off the camera and sent it to Xyger for not being there. The image was later given the text “Admins Say Fuck You.” Since stepping down, I’ve often taken a picture whenever I’m with an admin flipping off the camera to send to the other admins (at events like PAX, Nikki Petitt’s wedding last month, or here at KFL). So as to not really interfere with the actual group admin picture, I took one myself, with my middle finger visible in frame and the admins all flipping ME off in response. Love all those guys though and the work they do. Just some light razzing about the fact that I managed to escape.
As people started heading off to line up at the venue, our 11th and final roommate Andy Davies showed up. We visited for a little bit and I grabbed Brandon to head back to our hotel and charge up a little bit. As we waited, a young woman named Juliana (or Julzzz) introduced herself and asked if we heading over to the event and that she was alone and wondered if she could join us. I said we were heading back to our room for a bit first but she was certainly welcome to. On the drive over, we quickly learned that she had just graduated high school the night before (so congrats to her!) and that she was quite the adventurous convention attendee (she’ll even be at E3 in a couple weeks). I give her all the credit in the world for being courageous to head off to these kinds of things solo and it was a pleasure getting to know her a bit on the walk over to the event line as well.
As expected, plenty of people were already in line and hanging out around 3:30pm when my little group arrived, nearly FOUR hours before the doors would open and they’d start letting in the VIPs. But that just meant four hours of hanging out and visiting with friends. Rather than stick with one single group, I tried to bounce around both the general admission and VIP lines throughout in order to chat with all sorts of attendees – old friends and new faces alike – and see how their weeks were going and what they were hoping to see out of the night.
Eventually, the doors opened and the VIPs started heading into the Regency Ballroom. Grimecraft was acting as the DJ, there was a merch room off to the side, and the VIPs could head upstairs and grab a seat or mingle if they wanted. As the room filled, Dave Fennoy’s lovely voice said the show would be starting in 5 minutes and a loading bar came up on the screens, serving as a cue for people in the balcony to grab our seats.
My phone was low on battery life so I didn’t live tweet out this year’s event, meaning I don’t have a personal play-by-play reference point but I’ll go over some of the biggies:
Andy Cortez rocked the Jimmy Hendrix National Anthem to kick off the show.
Xavier Woods was an excellent host. The UpUpDownDown YouTuber and member of the longest reigning tag team champions in WWE history was more than up for the task. He had some great material describing his job as professional LARPing and talking about occasions in his life where he felt ostracized for being weird (like when he’d devoted 96 hours to Persona 4 Golden on his Vita) but that he found people like Greg Miller and Kinda Funny who accepted him.
We got entrances for Kevin (playing up his clumsiness), Nick (with beach balls for the audience as the “Playing With the Boys” scene from Top Gun played), Greg (a Y2J WWE entrance that transitioned into him in a Wonder Woman outfit), and Tim (who descended from the rafters in a giant Let Tim Host cape.
Greg gave an impassioned speech about all of the growing pains the last few months and emphasized that this was the embodiment of Kinda Funny Best Friend: people coming together (in person or online watching Periscope or the later edited video) in support of one another. People who would hang out and build four days of community events from the ground up without Kinda Funny even doing anything. So the show started off with me weeping out of pride and love.
Greg then segued right into the Press Conference to kick things off. Joey Noelle came out to announce that Zacq Wenzel has been working on a redesign of the Kinda Funny Doodles and a new season will be launching in July. We got to see an episode about Nick having some difficulties with a Starbucks order.
Andy Cortez came out next with a very tongue-in-cheek by the numbers E3-style delivery of the new show he’ll be spearheading: Party Mode – a weekly Let’s Play series where he’ll get to have fun editing, including crazy group Let’s Plays, new developments in the Kinda Funny World Championship drama, and more.
Nick came out next to give an update on the Animated series and remind everyone that even though the original 12-episode run is nearing an end, they’ll be doing 3 bonus episodes as a “thank you for your patience as we got further and further behind schedule.” We then saw a tease of an episode airing next week featuring Colin Moriarty playing Dungeon Master for a game of D&D.
Tim came out to talk about the fact that growing up he loved playing Ninja Turtles where he’d be Leonardo and Kevin would be Donatello. They didn’t have a Raph because he was rude. But they had a Mikey. And now, so does Kinda Funny with the addition of Cool Greg Gettys as a Production Assistant to support Kevin. Cool Greg was incredibly grateful to the community for all of the support they’ve given him and he promised he wouldn’t be letting the Best Friends down.
Greg (Miller) came out to talk about a couple new shows he was doing (he also rushed through some more random Patreon restructuring stuff but those are better detailed in the official announcement video). Then he announced the new shows he’ll be working on. First, at long last, we will get Cooking with Greggy as a seasonal show (starting in September). This will air as a limited run of episodes that (by Greg’s own admission) should probably be called Cooking with the Millers, as Genevieve is a much better cook. As somebody who has personally been inspired to take up cooking by Greg, I’m really excited for this!
His other new show, which will effectively be serving as the evolution of PS I Love You XOXO, will be Kinda Funny Games Daily: a daily live gaming podcast running immediately after the Kinda Funny Morning Show (before being exported to YouTube and podcast services. Designed as a two-person show, Greg will be the anchor, with Tim and Andy occasionally stepping in to the second chair. But additional heavy lifting will come in the form of friends of Kinda Funny Andrea Rene and Danny O’Dwyer, who have each been contracted for two shows a week. As a fan (and Patreon supporter) of both of their outside endeavors – What’s Good Games and No Clip, respectively – I’m incredibly excited to see this show.
Kinda Funny Games Daily will focus on the gaming news of the day (leaving the Kinda Funny Morning Show set to focus on other pop culture features like comics, movies, and entertainment). Greg seems really excited to be spearheading this daily gaming talk show, which will start the week after E3.
Greg then invited the fully assembled Kinda Funny team out and had everyone circle up for an Avengers-type hero shot of the team.
With the press conference complete, the show transitioned into a live mini-GameOverGreggy show (with a like bagpipe player playing the opening theme). Greg, Tim, and Nick, talked a bit informally to the crowd. Greg announced that he would be voicing another character in Tt Games’ upcoming LEGO Marvel Superheroes 2 (after his debut in LEGO Marvel Avengers). He was also excited to announce – to the audience and his co-hosts – that Nick and Tim had also been invited to voice characters in the game.
Greg brought a young man (I think named) Cade onstage, who happened to be the 12-year-old of the family mentioned in my Wednesday recap. Greg had some fun hassling his parents for letting them watch the content in its more adult moments. It’s a bit of a blur at this point (a few days later) but I believe this was also when the guys announced that Digiorno had delivered 1,500 coupons for free pizzas for the Kinda Funny Best Friends. Sadly, I don’t think these coupons ever made their way up to the VIPs in the balcony (I certainly never saw one).
The show transitioned into an impromptu episode of Love and Sex Stuff. Tim made is clear that the show is still on hiatus but they wanted to have a special live episode for Kinda Funny Live 3. They brought a pair of couples up on stage. The first were the newly married Adam and Laura I mentioned in the Friday recap. They asked how to have a long and happy marriage and the answer was the Love and Sex Stuff go to answer: “communication.” The other pair were Michael Ruiz and Amber Donnelly, who I recognized after the fact as the couple at the front of the VIP line for last year’s KFL2 (they beat my group by about 30 seconds). Michael asked when the best time to propose was, leading to his own proposal onstage, Amber said yes and we had echoes of Kevin’s proposal from last year, with a similar She Said Yes graphic and everything. Congratulations to the happy couple!
After that lovely moment, Greg (from offstage) insisted that if Tim and Nick were going to bring one of their shows back for a Live KFL3 edition, then so would he. Cue the Oreo Oration graphic and Greg coming out to review the Original Oreo, which had been filmed in one of the first batches of episodes but never edited. Greg stressed that Oreo Oration probably WOULDN’T be coming back because it was a pretty big pain in the ass to edit. But we’d get this live episode of him reviewing America’s favorite cookie. All of the classic segments were there (and it’s kind of impressive how effortlessly Greg can fall right into the old script). The original Oreo got a 10 out of 10. Because of course it did; it started it all.
Greg then introduced that Nick has actually been pursuing a side passion of his doing stand-up comedy. He’s apparently been going out to open-mic nights to test out material and then came out for a set in front of the Best Friends. He got a ton of love from the crowd and had a pretty solid line-up of jokes. Nick was followed by a return performance from Mike Drucker, delivering his own set of stand-up for the crowd. The Co-Head Writer of Bill Nye Saves the World, much like last year, had the crowd in the palm of his hand. This stand-up segment wrapped up the first act of the show, leading into a (much-appreciated) intermission.
Act two kicked off with an Andy’s 30-Second Review of the first act. A couple of his stand-out observations: “too many Gregs” and “Colin hasn’t been showing up to rehearsals…”
We then segued into the musical portion of the evening with another return performance, this time in the form of MegaRan. He performed a Mega Man-inspired number before going into a WWE-inspired number about The New Day. About halfway through the song, Xavier Woods came out to remind MegaRan that he was right backstage and if he was gonna do a New Day number, he should be involved. So the song picked back up with Xavier Woods performing the song alongside MegaRan.
Then, Nick and Tim came out as the Internet Explorers performing some of their numbers like “Talk Shit, Get Shot.” Andy Cortez came out to play electric guitar while the Internet Explorers performed the theme song for the Animated Series. We also got a song to “invoke the Bongos gods” and pay off the long-running gag about playing Kevin’s belly like a set of bongos. There was another number about loving drones. The original plan would have featured Tim and Nick crowdsurfing while a drone flew above them in the Regency Ballroom recording footage. But apparently, the drone didn’t cooperate during rehearsal so they ran the segment with a couple of cameras recording from the balcony.
Then Tonedeff came out to perform a couple numbers with the Internet Explorers. One of the numbers was his Aerobics Champions remix that debuted at last year’s show. The other number had Tim, Nick, and Tonedeff traveling out into the crowd and then asked that the audience run in a circle around them a la a whirpool effect. Some people really got into it but the front handful of rows definitely decided they weren’t giving up their spots.
Following Tonedeff’s performance, there was a really impressive graphic announcing the Kinda Funny Championship (I should also point out that there were a couple interstitials throughout the show where Nick and Greg were interviewed by referee Andy about the Mario Kart title match). Tim and Kevin came out as commentators. Andy would be serving as the referee. And then Nick and Greg came out to compete over the belt (both featuring some Danny Wiessner music for their intros with Greg entering in a Beyond shirt to “Go Beyond” and Nick entering to “Producer Seducer”). And intense race on Mount Wario delivered a few last minute lead changes (but not quite as dramatic as the finish between the Greg/Xyger race) with Greg ultimately taking the win.
A pre-recorded video then played to interrupt Greg’s celebration. Announcing the the belt Greg had was now worthless as he had a new Kinda Funny World Championship belt commissioned. Nick then came out to show off a new, more professionally crafted belt. Nick established the new ground rules: anyone can challenge for it, and the champion can determine the match. So Greg immediately challenged, and Nick declared it would be a Beard-off, which Nick of course won. Xavier Woods then came out to challenge and convinced Nick to make it a Street Fighter match, which Woods won, making him the new champion.
It was then agreed that Woods would defend the belt later in an 8-person Battle Royal to give Kinda Funny a chance to reclaim the belt. But before then, there would be a series of Grudge Matches.
Up first, Andy declared that he had a score to settle with Chad the Piranha plant. A life-sized Chad the Piranha plant came out and Andy just beat it up, “killing” him. So presumably, the recurring bit of Chad the Piranha plant is no more. Andy claimed he did it “for Reddit” presumably referring to critical comments of the gag.
Next, Kevin insisted he had a score to settle with Sean “The Shark” Finnegan after losing two foot races. So Kevin challenged Sean to a Milkshake-off, with both men drinking a milkshake as fast as possible. Guest judge Harley from Epic Meal Time came out to referee the match, which Kevin ended up winning, in part by using a second straw for part of the bout.
Then came the Battle of the Bandicoot between Tim and the fan who challenged him via online promos months ago: Double D Dougherty (@cheeks_jr). The kid built a solid hype package recapping the fued and building it up (and there was a joke about him possibly being Greg’s son as he had the intensity, physique, and Team Fat shirt to match). The two battled in a speed-run of a level from Crash Bandicoot, with Tim stumbling and Double D winning the race. Tim offered a handshake out of respect.
Finally, we got the Battle Royale for the title with a series of guests. Xavier Woods would defend against, Greg and Nick from Kinda Funny, Alfredo Diaz, Fran Mirabella from IGN, Brandon Jones from Easy Allies, and Shaun and Craig from Game Attack in an 8-man Gang Beasts match. Shaun Bolan ultimately won the match but the Kinda Hunnies (Gia, Paula, and Genevieve) came out throwing wine bottles at the competitors and absconding with the belt. Tim then joked that we’d have to tune in to Raw and the next few weeks of shows to see what happened next. The announcement video seems to suggest that we might see the ongoing saga of the Kinda Funny World Championship on the new Party Mode show. With Shaun from Game Attack technically the reigning Champion, I wouldn’t be surprised to see movement at RTX next month.
With the Kinda Funny World Championship segment wrapped up, the base show was complete, but Xavier Woods came back out to invite the audience to bring the guys back out for an encore.
And out came Boy Orgy for their rendition of “Everybody (Boy Orgy’s Back),” complete with choreography and background dancers.
Andy, Nick, and Tim all gave their thank you’s to wrap up the night (Xavier Woods also thanked everyone for welcoming him so warmly).
When Tim invited Greg out to say his goodbyes, an off-stage Greg pouted that he didn’t want to. So Tim called in a bit of help and we heard “If ya smellllllll… what The Rock…is cooking” to a huge pop from the crowd. And then a video of The Rock appeared on the screen to an even BIGGER pop. The Rock introduced Greg and admitted that while he hasn’t met the guys, he’s become a fan of them through the work he’s seen.
Greg came out to deliver his thank yous, including Colin, the rest of Kinda Funny, his family and friends, and the community for all of the love and support.
And with that, balloons dropped, confetti cannons fired, and Kinda Funny Live 3 was in the books.
Thank you Kinda Funny for an always entertaining show and the incredible community you’ve brought together.
Other Fun Moments
In addition to The Rock, there were also pre-filmed videos from other assorted guests to introduce/celebrate the Kinda Funny gang at various moments: Janina Gavankar (who will be playing the lead role in Star Wars Battlefront 2) for Joey Noelle, Andrew WK for Andy Cortez, Hunter Pence for Nick Scarpino, Logic for Tim Gettys, Sasha Banks for Cool Greg Gettys and Sisqo for Greg Miller.
The community was pretty damn chant-happy. Chants included: New Day Rocks, Beach Ball Mania, Let Time Host (soooooo many times), Oreo, Nick Scarpino, Encore, Thank You, and We Love You.
Post Show Insanity
Greg announced an after party at Wing Wings after the show and hundreds of people flocked across town to the small establishment. Highlights included Max Landis buying $500 worth of wings to feed the crowd. Harley added a few pizzas from the parlor a couple doors down. And Xavier Woods hung out with the crowd as well (I even gave him one of my pins). Hundreds of fans having an impromptu block party was something special. Landis, Gen, and Greg’s mom all hopped behind the counter to help serve the wings as they came off the line.