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Rob Schneider’s new television show a hit

"Rob!" star Rob Schneider gets a curtain call Saturday at MontBleu Theatre.

"Rob!" star Rob Schneider gets a curtain call Saturday at MontBleu Theatre.

Rob Schneider, the star or the sitcom “Rob!,” has a simple view about comedy: “I want to do what makes me laugh and I don’t care if I look like an idiot doing it.”

Schneider is fearless when it comes to his characters, which include Tiny Elvis, the Orgasm Guy, the Richmeister who sat next to the office copy machine and the Sensitive Naked Man.

“It’s a like a woman,” he told Lake Tahoe Action. “If a woman is trying to be sexy, she will never be funny. And if a guy’s trying to look cool, he can’t be funny. For me it’s never about that.

“I just want to do what I thought was funny, and if it’s a naked guy making other people uncomfortable and not thinking that it has anything to do with him, that was it. It wasn’t more complicated than that.”

Schneider will be onstage in the MontBleu Theatre – wearing clothes, we suspect – Saturday, March 24, for a standup comedy performance. A native of nearby Pacifica, Schneider was a standup comic before gaining stardom on “Saturday Night Live,” followed by numerous appearances on the big screen.

He also appeared at MontBleu 368 days earlier.

“Rob sold out last winter at MontBleu, so when it came time to strategize the entertainment lineup for the 2012 winter season, his name was on top of the list to bring back for ski season”, said Paul Reder, the president of PR Entertainment, Inc.

When he spoke with Lake Tahoe Action last year, the television show was expected to be named “My Casa.” However, it was changed to “Rob!,” and it has been a big success since it debuted Jan. 12.

Last Thursday’s episode on CBS was watched by 10.74 million people even though it was up against “American Idol.” To put this in perspective, “The Office” was seen by 5.14 million and “30 Rock” by 3.88 Million.

Schneider portrays a man who marries into a Mexican-American family. His young wife, Maggie, is played by Claudia Bassols. Other stars include father in-law Cheech Marin and motheri in-law Diana Maria Riva. Maggie’s irreverent uncle is played by Eugenio Derbez and Lupe Ontiveros from”Desperate Housewives” is Maggie’s grandmother.

The program is written by Schneider and Lewis Morton who worked with Schneider on “SNL,” and wrote nine episodes of “Futurama.”

“I’m excited about doing a TV show,” Schnieder said last year. “I think you can do something on TV that maybe you couldn’t do (before). There’s a real resurgence of comedy on television. There are some really funny shows and there hasn’t been for years and years and years (since) ‘Seinfeld.’ Decent really funny shows now. ’30 Rock’ is funny. ‘Eastbound and Down’ is funny. ‘The Simpsons,’ still funny, ‘Modern Family.’ So I think you can do a decent show.”

Schneider returned to the standup stage last year.

“I haven’t done standup in a long time and I really wanted to do it,” he said. “I saw George Carlin at his last show and it was incredible, so I wanted to give it a shot. … I’ve been really working at it and I feel my comedy is in a really good place.”

Live comedy takes a different kind of courage than TV sketches and movie scenes require.

“You have to get over your self-preservation of your ego,” Schneider said. “You have to throw yourself to the lions. You have to try to tame the bull but the bull’s never going to be tamed so you have to dance around it and figure it out. It’s just different.”

Heeding the words of Jerry Seinfeld – “If you’re famous, you get 30 seconds, then you better say something funny” – Schneider said he has done his homework.

“It’s such an arrogant idea: I’m going to make you laugh,” Schneider said. “Well, you better. It’s also a form of aggression, comedy. A mild form of aggression but aggression nonetheless.

“For me, (it’s about) simplifying a little idea and making people laugh. I’ve been criticized for it for 20 years since I’ve become a movie star, it doesn’t bother me because that’s what you’re supposed to do. You’re supposed to take a complicated idea, simplify it and show the humor in it. My heroes were Monty Python, and they could be very esoteric and they could also do fart jokes and fall-down, goofy physical stuff. To me, it’s whatever makes you laugh. Those guys were obviously making themselves laugh.”