The evolution of Bob Saget’s career seemed to swing from one end of the spectrum to the other. It began with a role as the squeaky clean dad on “Full House,” which later became an inevitable setup for him to shatter that image with a darker type of comedy in his standup routine. (Early in his career Saget also hosted “America’s Funniest Videos” on television.)
But Saget, like everyone else, is not a one-dimensional character, and his standup today covers all of who he is and was, without necessarily having to go “there” anymore.
“You can bring your grandmother to this show,” he said in a recent phone interview about his appearance at Rutland’s Paramount Theatre at 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 17.
“I used to have an HBO special in which I told a couple stories that became, ‘Tell the story about the donkey.’ It’s like no, we’ve had enough of the donkey. Let’s not go there,” Saget said. “It’s not some crass show anymore. I’m like a silly comedian.”
“I just try to bring a room together,” Saget added. “And in Rutland I’m excited because I know it’s a small town, right? That’s what I love, I love to do like a town meeting.”
He has a whole list of projects he’s busy with, from directing to starring in reboots of the shows that made him famous. But when asked if he minds talking about his standup in particular, since it’s what is bringing him to Rutland, he says, “Thank you.”
“That’s the thing that always is like home base for me,” Saget said. “It always gets me back to myself. When I wanted to change my career I (tried) a bunch of things, but I always come back to standup.”
“I went through my time going through different stages,” he explained. “I always started with some kind of weirdness with my comedy, but now I feel people know me and I feel like I know people. I’m 62 now so it’s kind of a real exchange.”
Saget’s current act addresses all the things on the audience’s mind without dwelling on them, and makes room for some new ideas, and where he wants to go next.
“My writing process has been: I come up with an idea and then I spin it for 10 minutes on stage,” Saget said. “And then every time I do it it’s a completely different thing. I free associate. The best comedians don’t do things word for word; it becomes real every time they do it. Except for a couple that are so perfect. I mean, Jerry Seinfeld is a wordsmith and a precise genius. But it’s really about getting on stage and doing it.”
“It’s a magic thing to take that microphone out of that mic stand,” Saget said. “And with standup a lot of times you’re fortunate enough to have your audience already built in. They know the different sides of me now because I’ve been doing it so long, and I’m real excited about where I’m going with it. It’s changing and this tour is very much part of it.”