Hilarious Ladies Online: Rods and Cones - OZY | A Modern Media Company

Hilarious Ladies Online: Rods and Cones

Hilarious Ladies Online: Rods and Cones

By Michelle Tea


Because as much as we love Tina Fey, we can’t keep watching reruns of 30 Rock. Meet new new Web series Rod and Cones. 

By Michelle Tea

We seem to be in a golden age of hilarious lady weirdos, female funny people unafraid to use the most cringe-worthy aspects of the XX chromosome experience as fodder for humor. Whether it’s the refreshingly awkward sex and nudity on Girls or the unabashed loserdom of the stoner besties of Broad City, one thing is clear: Ladies are done with being ladylike, and the often grody and bizarre realities of life as a female being mined for a new kind of funny that is shocking, raw, colorful and brand spanking new.

The internet is currently teeming with raunchy, clever girl-driven series clamoring to be the next online-to-on-TV crossover, and among the most vibrant and interesting is Rods and Cones, a new web show from longtime collaborators Beth Lisick and Tara Jepsen. Embodying the personas of Carole Murphy and Mitzi Fitzsimmons, a couple of middle-aged lady comediennes who live for pancakes, make extra dough doing janitorial work at the local gay bathhouse and are hardcore, life-long BFFs. Their stand-up routines boomerang between Cathy cartoons come to life and exquisitely Dada-esque physical comedy, lovingly lampooning comedy itself.

The resulting hijinks are joyfully zany and enthusiastically inappropriate. 

Rods and Cones is Jepsen and Lisick’s first internet venture, having until now brought Carole and Mitzi to the masses via live performance before sold-out crowds in San Francisco and New Yorkand a couple of hilarious short films. For this ambitious project the pair did a huge Kickstarter campaign, netting $30,000, which allowed them to ace a high level of production and bring in some co-stars from New York City’s downtown performance scene. Erin Markey, a regular on the stage at East Village cabaret hotspot Joe’s Pub, and Jibz Cameron, the one-man-band behind the multi-media art explosion Dynasty Handbag play “The MILFies,” a performance art duo who become Carole and Mitzi’s rivals when they decide to try to pay off art school by posing as Mommy Comics and winning the pot at the Women’s Comedy Jam.

The resulting hijinks are joyfully zany and enthusiastically inappropriate. I admit I’m somewhat biased, as I am friends with these funny ladies and have been LOL-ing around the livingroom with them for years. But now this summer, you can too, when the series will come out of post-production and onto your laptop. In the meantime:


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