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Comic George Wallace animated, and gets real, on streaming shows

Even outside the Westgate Las Vegas, George Wallace’s life is a cabaret.

The veteran stand-up comic and actor has two premieres in the same week. He’s cast in “The Premise,” created by B.J. Novak, which was to premiere Thursday night on FX on Hulu. The show is a half-hour anthology of separate stories, taking on current issues and concerns. Wallace’s “The Ballad of Jesse Wheeler” was out Sept. 23.

“Please take a gander and so forth, what have you,” Wallace posted on Twitter. “I had a blast.”

Novak created and hosts each episode, with Wallace featured on a roster of topnotch actors that includes Lucas Hedges, Beau Bridges, Ben Platt, Tracee Ellis Ross, Daniel Dae Kim and O’Shea Jackson Jr.

“Guns, identity, social justice, sex, capitalism, revenge, love, fame, social media — nothing is off limits,” the show’s web platform promises. Sounds like Wallace’s show, which is still on pause at Westgate Cabaret.

The is also in featured in voice-over form in “Ten Year Old Tom,” which also launched Thursday, on HBO Max. Donning a pin-stripe suit and sporting a moustache, Wallace plays the father of Tom’s friend Nelson (who sounds like an updated, cartoon adaptation of Eddie Haskell).

In the series trailer, Wallace offers up variations of words describing the male anatomy after the kids express confusion about such terms. When the kids want ice cream, Wallace tells them they should start a GoFundMe campaign as long as they funnel the proceeds to something related to ice cream.

So they find an ice cream man, voiced by David Duchovny, who sells them his entire truck for $6,000.

I don’t know about you, but I’m watching this show.

Garrett calls the shots

Brad Garrett has checked in, saying he’s going to headline himself at his club at MGM Grand over New Year’s Eve. The dates are Dec. 30, 31 and Jan. 1 (two shows).

Garrett had tapped “SNL” alum Rob Schneider to fill those dates, but is not having Schneider perform at all at Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club.

This is a simple explanation. Garrett is only hiring acts who are vaccinated for COVID. Schneider has long been a vocal, anti-vaccination activist. Garrett says that at the moment his entire staff, and 89 percent of the booked acts so far, have proof of vaccination.

This is the first New Year’s Eve booking in Garrett’s new location, in the old China Tang space, in the promenade leading to MGM Grand Garden Arena. The grand opening is set for Nov. 27, with Garrett appearing with club vets Butch Bradley and Trixx. Safe calls, all around.

What works in Vegas

Brody Dolyniuk playing Reynolds Hall at the Smith Center for the Performing Arts. Dolyniuk’s “Symphonic Rock Show” at 7:30 p.m. Friday is the first performance in the big room since “Once On This Island” hauled out in March 2020.

Dolyniuk characteristically sells well (and we’re seeing mostly balcony seats still available), and his set list is peppered with classic rock from such iconic bands as the The Who, Led Zeppelin, Queen and Pink Floyd. Dolyniuk has grown a fervent locals following since his days at Railhead at Boulder Station in the late-1990s. The set list is mostly unchanged. The venue is what’s different.

House work

We have an answer as to what is all the upheaval at the entrance of House of Blues at Mandalay Bay. This is what used to be known as the House of Blues Courtyard, looking more like the Salvage Yard over the past several weeks.

The work is actually a $4.5 million renovation of that space, top-to-bottom, just completed.

The updated venue looks like a distillery, with distressed steel, millwork, brick, riveted metal panels and a copper till. New folk art is installed and an enlarged patio seating area are among the amenities. GM Brian Kline says, “While the venue may look different to our guests, the renovations and enhancements were designed to meet the needs of today’s discerning patron while paying respect to our brand’s rich history.”

We were there when the place opened in 1999, grooving away to Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. The venue has not been significantly overhauled since.

The 1st-and-10 orchestra

David Perrico’s Pop Strings returned to Myron’s at the Smith Center for the first time Wednesday night, his first show there since his “Godfather”-themed performance in November 2019. With a couple of Las Vegas Raiders officials in the audience, Perrico interrupted his jazz set with the theme from “Monday Night Football” and the Raiders’ theme, “The Autumn Wind.” Those are both firsts, in what was originally called Cabaret Jazz.

Drag it out

The Garden in the Arts District has announced its own drag competition, “Drag Superstar,” opening Thursday night and continuing at 10 p.m. every Thursday through Nov. 18.

This is an elimination-style, drag race contest for 14 aspiring queens. Each week audience members and special guest judges decide who moves to the next round. The queen who wins gets $2,000, and is invited to join The Garden’s residency roster of “Ru Paul’s Drag Race” alums Alexis Mateo, Coco Montrese, Kylie Sonique Love, Jaymes Mansfield, Jessica Wild and Salem Night.

Garden owner Eduardo Cordova says his hotspot’s lineup of queens “have have helped make us the premier venue for drag in Las Vegas.” I live in the neighborhood, and that place hops, no question.

More on Cordova’s fiefdom follows …

Cool Hang Alert

Ruby Lewis, a bonafide Broadway talent, premieres her “Starlet” vintage-Hollywood show at Star Piano Cocktail Lounge at 8 p.m. Friday. Cordova owns this venue, too. The new nightspot is in an old locale, formerly Sonny’s Saloon at 3449 S. Sammy Davis Jr. Dr. Lewis playing that renovated club is the very definition of classing up the joint.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at jkatsilometes@reviewjournal.com. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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