Then there are the individual sets, which, much like any comedy show you can attend, range in quality — although, thankfully, none of them are actually bad. Most are inspired, offbeat bits. Neal Brennan sets up three microphones — one for one-liners, one for fully realized jokes, and one for just straight-up emotional honesty — and travels between the three, gaining big laughs not only for his punchlines, but also from his quick pivots from one mic to the other. Later, Moshe Kasher has a planted heckler accuse him of looking like a French clown and instructs him to mime increasingly odd, and funny, situations.
My only real qualm with the show is that there’s so much happening. Multiple acts, the backstage bits, the host banter, and, in the pilot, a surprise cameo by Adam Scott are all jam-packed into about 21 minutes. It’s lightning quick, which I do often appreciate in a show (and it works with the cool setting of the back room of a comic book store), and the format, quick and funny enough to keep you awake, works for the 12:30 AM slot — but it also means that we don’t get full sets or longer moments backstage. The Meltdown never stays put for long enough to give us a full experience, but what we do get is still good enough to keep me there.