Daily Show Writer and Producer Rory Albanese This Week @ Helium

rory albanese

A few years ago, Rory Albanese punched a 9/11 truther in the face.

That’s a pretty good description of Albanese’s sense of humor. He spent nine years working at The Daily Show (five as a producer) and is now setting out on a tour that stops in Philly from Wednesday until Saturday. I talked to Rory on the phone before his first Philly show...

Witout: Rory, I gotta know why you would leave such a cushy job on The Daily Show.

Albanese: Well, the job was pretty cushy and would have been for a long time, but I’m getting older and it’s like there’s this thing I gotta try cause the window’s closing. I didn’t have a map in some old journal telling me how The Daily Show was gonna play out. I’m doing this thing I wish I would have done at 22, only now it’s like a Kevin Costner movie – “Does his arm still throw? I don’t even know if he can get it up to 90 anymore boys. We’ll have to see.”

Witout: What was it like working with Jon Stewart?

Albanese: Any joke I made for The Daily Show goes through the awesome-maker, Jon Stewart. He’s saved so many of my jokes that would have flopped. You give him even a whiff of an idea and he’ll kill with it.

Witout: Your thoughts on Obamacare?

Albanese: Sure I care about healthcare, but not when The Big Bang Theory’s on. (joking) I’m right down the middle, politically, but I really feel that everyone should have access to good healthcare.

Witout: What was it like doing standup overseas, for the troops?

Albanese: Having been to Afghanistan is a real nice slice of humble pie. It makes you not want to ever wanna hear Kim Kardashian complain about anything ever again. Our veterans coming home are as badass as the “Greatest Generation” ever was and there’s no ticker tape parades for them, it’s bullshit.

Witout: So, I read on your Wikipedia page that you punched a 9/11 Truther in the face at a Jon Stewart event?

Albanese: I should have gone out the backdoor, is the lesson I learned from it. They started saying all this really terrible stuff to us, kinda like the Paparazzi do, and they started pushing us.

I’ve never punched anyone before or since, but I was here for 9/11.


Albanese’s Wednesday night set was smart, topical humor you’d expect from a Daily Show producer mixed with everything from a proctology visit, to why ‘The Right’ should actually want Obamacare, to a family vacation in which Rory and his 8 year old nephew shared similar roles. All with high energy.

Pretty much anything can happen during Albanese’s next three nights after this Philly interchange: Midway through the show an audience member called the two women behind him (who were talking through the whole show) the “C” word. The whole crowd froze. Someone yelled EAGLES. Albanese goes, “They’re not “C” words, they’re just bitches. Well played!

Rory Albanese will be performing at Helium tonight through Saturday Nov 2. For tickets, visit HeliumComedy.com.

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