Sgt. Pecker

Jackie Martling

Oglio Records, 1996

REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


If you've missed the three previous reviews we've run of Jackie Martling's CDs, let's put the statement out there early: You don't go into any of his shows or releases thinking you're going to be listening to jokes you could tell your three-year-old. Martling has built up a reputation for telling off-color, scatalogical, sexually-oriented jokes. He's also built up a reputation for being hilarious to listen to.

Sgt. Pecker, Martling's 1995 release, is further proof that the man best known once as a sidekick to Howard Stern (last I heard, he had quit the position) is a walking my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Truly Tastless Jokes encyclopedia. Some of the material on this disc will make you laugh hysterically, even though you may be embarrassed to admit what it was that made you double up in stitches.

Daring to stand out in a "politically correct" world, Martling does not pull any punches with any group - including himself. Everyone is fair game for Martling's machine-gun style of jokes, including (but not limited to) gays, blacks, Polish, Italians, Irish, religious - let's see, who did we leave out? You have to have skin of cast-iron and be able to laugh at yourself to truly appreciate what Martling sets out to accomplish.

Like his other discs, not all the material hits the mark. Then again, Martling has always structured his act so that everyone in the crowd will at least laugh at some of the material. Personally, I thought that Martling got a little too graphical with some of the humor near the end of the disc. But, I can shrug it off after a moment or two. Besides, Martling has the perfect answer for those who are offended by some of his jokes. After one such bombardment, he says to the crowd, "Fine. You like folk songs? 'Puff The Magic Dragon.'"

What makes Martling so successful is not merely his ability to pull jokes off the top of his head like he were punching the information up on a computer. The fact that he is willing to stand up in the face of being labeled "politically incorrect" and gladly wearing the title as if it were a New York Yankees windbreaker is refreshing for this day and age. Anyway, if you're easily offended, chances are you're listening to someone like Bill Cosby, and not Martling.

It gets to be repetitive when writing about Martling's CDs, especially when I choose not to repeat some of the jokes. (Hey, find out what's so funny for yourself.) But it remains true that Martling is one of the funniest people out there telling jokes for a living. While I wouldn't recommend Sgt. Pecker as someone's first taste of Martling's act, it's most definitely worth adding to your collection once you discover how good this guy is.

Rating: B

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2001 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Oglio Records, and is used for informational purposes only.