Held in Hollywood Forever's gothic-gorgeous Masonic Lodge, the 16th incarnation of the on-again-off-again-since-2008 Comedy Is Dead rejoined the land of the living June 6 after a two-year hiatus. Linchpin producer/booker Samantha Varela welcomed sketch group WOMEN as regular hosts, plus a lineup featuring Maria Bamford, Matt Besser, Steve Agee and Andy Kindler. (Aug. 21's guests included Eric André, Rory Scovel, Joe Mande and founder Duncan Trussell.) “It's not haunted or ghostly, but it's almost like you can feel the power of the Masons,” Varela says of the venue. “Mixed with the energy in the room from over 300 excited people, it's almost overwhelming. It's truly the best room I've ever seen for comedy. Everyone leaves feeling inspired and renewed with life … which is ironic, since it's at a cemetery.” Comedy Is Dead returns Oct. 9. —Julie Seabaugh
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