Tonight’s live Comedy Central Roast Battle II is the culmination of a month of roasty TV, and about six months of preparation by the combatants.
RBII started last fall when various cities across America hosted “Road to Roast Battle” competitions to find the best battlers the country has to offer. Those competitions aired every Sunday in January on Comedy Central leading up to Roast Week, where we are now.
All this week, we watched the 16 semi-finalists take each other down with some brutal insults, and a ton of love. It’s all been hosted by Roastmaster Jeffrey Ross, and referee Brian Moses who co-created the original Roast Battle (along with Rell Battle) in the Belly Room of the Comedy Store. The ever-controversial “Wave” (read more about them here) comprised of Jeremiah Watkins, Jamar Neighbors and Willie Hunter have been serving as human ‘Whammies’ throughout.
Even if you prefer your comedy to be less gladiatorial, everyone should be watching Roast Battle to see and support some of your favorite comedians– some of them getting their first real national exposure– and to find out who are the emerging talents from other cities.
Tonight, the four battlers who have made it to the live finale are: Todd Barry, Matthew Broussard, Joe Dosch and Frank Castillo. It’s been a grueling fight to get to this moment. Secrets have been spilled, and there’s blood on the floor. Here’s what we’ve learned about each of the four finalists from their vicious opponents, their best line from the quarterfinals, plus everything else you need to know to get up to speed for tonight’s final.
Who he beat: Joe beat Leah Kayajanian in the first round, and took down the mighty Yamaneika Saunders in round two.
What we learned: According to his opponents, we know he used to date a cop, he’s a recovering alcoholic, and his mother survived cancer.
Best line about Yamaneika Saunders: “Yamaneika was on the Nightly Show. It was actually the Daily Show, but she blocked out the sun.”
Who he has to beat: Tonight, he needs to beat Frank Castillo and the winner of Barry/Broussard to become champion.
Who he beat: Frank took on Jay Light and won, then crushed Anna Valenzuela in a battle of Mexican vs Mexican.
What we learned: According to his opponents, Frank is a college drop out, or turned down a college scholarship or both, he has a cousin who died of an overdose, and he is addicted to playing video games.
Best line about Anna Valenzuela: “Anna could pass for a Trump. She’s got the body of Melania, the brains of Ivanka, and her womb is Barron.”
Who he has to beat: Frank takes on Joe Dosch in the Live Finals tonight, and will need to beat the winner of Barry/Broussard to become champion.
Who he beat: Todd beat out Jessica Kirson in a squeaker in round one, and destroyed Olivia Grace in the quarterfinals.
What we learned: Not much; most of the shots at Barry weren’t revealing. We did find out he’s part Syrian.
Best line about Olive Grace: “Well you’re quite busy yourself with that grueling road trip you do. I mean she will perform at laundromats from West Hollywood, all the way to North Hollywood.”
Who he has to beat: Todd takes on the man to beat the “great white privilege”, Matthew Broussard, and will also need to take down the winner of Dosch/Castillo to become the new champ.
Who he beat: Broussard took down NY’s reigning champion Zac Amico, and Alex Hooper in a fur trimmed hood and a tail.
What we learned: He started comedy because of John Mayer, he’s in a long distance relationship with a girl from Texas, his father died from Parkinson’s, he’s Jewish, and he gave up on a career as a financial analyst.
Best line about Alex Hooper: “Let’s address the elephant man in the room. Alex is only 31 years old. If wrinkles add character, he has a very strong g-mail password.” and “Alex Hooper is why you don’t feed Richard Simmons after midnight.”
Who he was to beat: Broussard has to beat the whispering warrior, Todd Barry and then the winner of Dosch/Castillo to take it all.
Don’t miss the Roast Battle II finals LIVE on Comedy Central tonight, Sunday January 29th. Patton Oswalt and T.J. Miller will be judging along with Jeff Ross and the Wave will be ready to go, stocked up with dollar store props. There’s no football this week, so instead of just sitting around wishing it was the Super Bowl already, get your aggression out in the healthiest way possible at 10pm on Comedy Central.