It is the Mecca of comedy – or at least one of them.
Some of the most famous names in the world of stand-up have played there, and many of them continue to play there to this day.
Everyone from the late Sam Kinison to Chris Hardwick has played The Comedy Store in La Jolla, California.
Updated 2/10/2020 – The setting is good, the sound is great, and the atmosphere is always ripe for comedy.
Never mind that it used to be a club with – at least some say – a lot of criminal activity and quite possibly (read: probably) murder going on in the basement, or the fact that it seems to be pretty severely haunted.
No Laughing Matter At The Comedy Store
A lot of strange paranormal activity has been reported at the Comedy Store over the years.
So if you like ghosts and you’re looking for things to do in La Jolla, this may be right up your alley.
Some people have reported objects moving by themselves, such as ashtrays floating in midair and chairs sliding across floors seemingly of their own volition.
The lights – always a key part of a building with a performance stage – have also been known to play tricks on people, going off sometimes in the middle of a performance.
Scariest perhaps of all is the sinister seven-foot tall figure, however, who lurks both inside and outside of The Comedy Store.
Beware ‘The Dark Man’ In This Haunted Comedy Club
Sometimes he is seen in the parking lot, sometimes just hiding in the shadows until someone sees him, at which point he disappears.
Employees, patrons and famous comedians alike (including on one memorable occasion Kinison himself) have reported seeing and hearing strange things in the building, but most of them do not see (or at least don’t report if they do) the Dark Man.
The few who do usually do so in hushed tones, and generally aren’t up for ever going back to The Comedy Store, no matter how funny the headliner of the week is.
“He was just so gruesome,” says one former customer, who attended a comedy show with a couple of friends in March of 2009.
“We were coming out of the bathroom after the show, and most of the people had already filed out and were heading for their cars.
“We were about to do the same when out of nowhere there just appeared this huge guy on the other side of the hall.
“He turned to look at us, and I thought we were all three going to pass out on the spot.
He was that scary.”
I ask her what he looked like.
“He was just this huge, tall man with blacked-out eyes.
Do you know what I mean?
I mean that where his eyes should have been, there were just these dark holes.
“He was smiling, but his face wasn’t sized right to his mouth or something, because it looked like his mouth took up the whole lower half of his face.
“And he said something to us right before turning around and walking through the wall and disappearing.”
What did he say to you?
“He just said, ‘Ha, ha, ha.’ Like that; not a real laugh, just a ha, ha, ha.
“As if he knew something we didn’t.
And I can tell you,” she says, and there are tears in her bloodshot eyes, which speak perhaps of a number of years of less-than-adequate rest, “I’ve been terrified ever since.”