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Review: Comic loser in 'This Too Shall Suck' wins

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 28, 2013 at 7:12 pm •  Published: January 28, 2013

NEW YORK (AP) — If you ever wanted to attend an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting in a bar, make room on your calendar any Thursday evening and go see the very funny one-man show "This Too Shall Suck."

It's written and performed with both sincerity and irony by Matt Graham, who is well aware that he's a narcissistic, self-destructive recovering alcoholic and comedian.

Graham's oddly appealing, sometimes poignant performance takes place only on Thursdays, through May 2 in the downstairs Huron Club at Soho Playhouse, a small room complete with full bar.

Aptly billed as a "traumedy," it's an inventive, intimate, crazy-quilt of a show. Because Graham was a very good standup comedian and comedy writer, he freely improvises, so each show may contain different stories.

His main premise is that he's a lifetime loser, either a total failure or always landing in second place despite having multiple talents. He explains how bad luck, or just maybe his sarcastic personality, propelled him into near-misses at many things in life, starting with being "miscast" by his birth in Indianapolis instead of a more hip big city.

Serially obsessive, he first excelled at childhood pingpong, (but was displaced by "an influx of Asian children"); then high-school quiz bowl (but truants don't make the team); and even (almost) played college basketball at age 39.

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