John Carroll University’s Kulas Auditorium was graced with the presence of comedian Julian McCullough on Thursday, Oct. 1 to kick off Homecoming weekend.
McCullough, an actor, writer and former personality of MTV’s “Guy Code,” has appeared on “Inside Amy Schumer” and “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon,” and has written for “Love You, Mean It” with Whitney Cummings.
Starting off the night was a special opening performance from John Carroll’s dance team, pep band and cheerleaders, who fired up the crowd. This exciting opening act included an audience dance off and a Blue Streak Hot Sauce giveaway.
The comedians, however, appeared to be running a bit behind schedule, as the show did not start on time.
After some brief stalling, McCullough’s opening act, a little-known comic, Emma Wilmann, surprised the audience with an outstanding performance full of laughs.
Wilmann touched on what some might consider controversial issues in a graceful manner, as first year student Mannie Brown pointed out.
“She was being an activist by making it funny, but still keeping it relevant by touching on key issues in society such as race, homophobia and ableism,” said Brown.
From her struggles of growing up and living with dyslexia to her anecdotes about her extremely liberal mother, Wilmann captivated her audience and left them wanting more.
After Wilmann’s performance, the crowd was ready for the main act, McCullough, to make his way to the stage.
Starting off his act, McCullough noted how the auditorium was indeed too big for the crowd that showed up, as only about one fourth of Kulas auditorium was full.
However, those students who did show up were presented with, yet again, a satisfying performance. The crowd was especially flattered when McCullough observed how friendly everyone on campus seems to be.
McCullough dove right into his act and pushed the boundaries with his humor, telling stories of his childhood and adolescent years. He told the crowd of his “hippie” upbringing in San Francisco, and his love of “The Babysitters Club” book series.
One story about being injured at a job he held as a teenager had the audience squirming in their seats and laughing simultaneously as he described the accident and a terrifying emergency room visit.
Freshman Celine Rivera said, “I really liked Julian because he told what I consider to be relatable stories.” She also noted that she “liked his style of delivery and his interaction with the audience.”
He even made sure to ask a few people who were leaving in the middle of performance where they were going. McCullough playfully called out one girl, who said she was going to work at the library, and noted that he and the audience members would visit her at work after the show.
The highlight of the night, however, was a story about McCullough’s young love interest, Sara, whom he fell in love with in college. He told the crowd about a tattoo of a butterfly with teardrops hovering above it that he got to profess his love for her. The crowd, not convinced that the story was real, was shocked when he lifted up his shirt and showed off his brightly colored tattoo.
Overall, the audience was pleased with both comedians, though they were not originally supposed to perform. Originally scheduled to perform was MTV’s “Girl Code” personality, Nicole Byer.
However, upon speaking with SUPB’s Major Events Coordinator, Shannon Poppe, it was found that Nicole “cancelled last minute due to a meeting with an MTV producer.”
By the end of the night, the atmosphere was electric and the comedians turned out to be a great fit for John Carroll students.
Both McCullough and Wilmann stayed briefly after their performances to take pictures with those students who waited to meet them.