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Emotional Rescue

An old-school comic enters the 21st century.

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Over the phone, comedian Emo Philips sounds pretty much as he does onstage. He sighs, his voice takes on a singsongy lilt, and he delivers words in a deadpan manner that suggests both bewilderment and frustration. And he always seems to be heading toward a joke. Even a recent vacation works itself into a punch line: "I went hiking in Canada," he says. "What are those things that stick to you that are hard to get off? Oh, yeah, charges of sexual molestation."

Philips, whose pageboy 'do and skewed humor made him a comedy star in the '80s, says he's now beginning to embrace the modern era. While he clings to old media — "I lie in bed and listen to cassettes," he says, "because I'll be darned if I'm going to take the manufacturer's word that they're blank." — he recently hired a team of computer geeks to create his spiffy website. "I don't even know how electricity works," he says. "All I know is it calms me."
April 14-15, 7:30 & 10:15 p.m.; Sun., April 16, 7:30 p.m.

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