Comic Iglesias lighter but show still super-sized

Posted: March 15, 2014 at 12:36 a.m.

He’s 100 pounds lighter, but heavyweight comic Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias still delivered a super-sized show and big laughs Friday night at Little Rock’s Robinson Center Music Hall.

His recent slim-down, inspired by a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis, required him to get some new Hawaiian shirts (adding to his collection of 600) and some new material. It could even lead to a new nickname.

“What are we going to call you?” he asked in an overwrought voice, imitating fans who haven’t adjusted to his transformation from a size he calls “Discovery-Channel fat.”

He returns in his rapid-fire Mexican accent: “Call me Buffy. I lift weights. I don’t care.”

In a 90-minute set (30 minutes longer than required by the stage digital countdown clock that he unplugged to the audience’s applause), the still fluffy and mostly family-friendly funnyman shared stories from the stage with a high-tech video and lighting setup he likened to “WWE meets the Food Network.”

While the former NBC Last Comic Standing contestant and star of several comedy specials has been branching out into movies (Magic Mike, Planes and the new A Haunted House 2 to be released April 18), he appeared as accessible and affable as ever.

There were jokes about body mass (about being weighed on an industrial scale: “Oh my God, I’m a semi!”). About race (insisting each ethnicity has its drinking music, he played Lynyrd Skynyrd for white people, the NFL theme for black people and “Kung Fu Fighting” for Asian people). And drinking (“There should be an app for people who like to drink and text and still keep their families”). And about his audiences (people still give him chocolate cake at every show because he said he liked it … once).

He stopped only to answer back at louder members of the crowd.

“Love you too,” he responded to one man. “Give me cake. Sugar-free”

But at the close of the show it was the audience that did most of the talking, delivering all the punchlines when Fluffy launched into some of his greatest hits (including his “Fat & Furious” escapades in a Volkswagen Beetle).

“When did my jokes become songs?” he asked with an exaggerated surprised expression, later adding, “Whoever thought we’d be in Little Rock, Arkansas, playing comedy karaoke?”