Comedian Al Madrigal, whose family has owned 49ers season tickets since the days of Kezar Stadium, does not use Levi’s Stadium as a punch line for any of his material.
Madrigal spent countless games in the upper deck at Candlestick Park above the Jumbotron, which was visible to nearly everybody outside of Section 62. Because Madrigal might have thought he was dying up there at Candlestick, he has a largely positive opinion of the 49ers’ current home.
And – before you ask – yes, Madrigal’s seats in Santa Clara are on the east side, where it seems as if the customers might as well be wearing eclipse glasses for a safe view of the action on the field.
“I’m on the microwave side,” Madrigal said on The 49ers Insider Podcast. “I’m on the walk-away-ten-shades-darker side.”
Madrigal did refer to the “sun issue” as a major problem, but he said he has no other significant complaints about Levi’s Stadium after experiencing the deteriorating conditions of Candlestick, as well as the lengthy hikes along a cramped concourse just to find an edible burger.
“I hear people complain about Levi’s – and there are complaints – but it’s just so much better than The ‘Stick,” Madrigal said.
Madrigal recalled the 49ers-Raiders game in 2011 that ended the annual preseason series.
In the Candlestick parking lot after the game, one man was shot in the face. In a separate incident, another man was beaten unconscious and when his friend tried to rescue him, he was reportedly shot four times. Madrigal witnessed another incident in the restroom that night.
“I saw a guy, huge man, smash another guy’s head against the bathroom sink,” Madrigal said. “I’m escorting my father out – a little old man. And I’m acting like I’m Secret Service. Mayhem everywhere.
“You want to be able to take your kids to the game. I’m a big Levi’s guy. There was a bad element at Candlestick after a while and it needed to go.”
Madrigal is a San Francisco native who grew up in the inner Sunset District and attended St. Ignatius High and the University of San Francisco. He now lives in Southern California and travels to the Bay Area for as many 49ers games as possible.
Madrigal, who spent six years as a correspondent on “The Daily Show,” might miss more games than usual this season. He was cast for a role in Kevin Hart’s movie, “Night School,” which is scheduled for an upcoming 30-day shoot in Atlanta with a release scheduled for next year.
Showtime recently renewed “I’m Dying Up Here” for a second season. Madrigal is a regular on the series.
He does his best to make sure business does not get in the way of his passion for the 49ers. Madrigal, an accomplished stand-up comedian, will appear at Kennedy Center in Washington on Nov. 18. It’s no coincidence the 49ers have a bye that weekend.
“It is insane, but it is by design when I get offered work, I do check a (49ers) schedule to make sure,” Madrigal said.
Madrigal said his distaste of the Seahawks has also prompted him to take a stand on ever again visiting or performing in Seattle.
“I will not go to Seattle under any circumstances,” Madrigal said. “I don’t care how much money people offer me. I will never, ever go to Seattle. . . . I will never perform in Seattle, and I will never go to that place.
“I used to go when they were not in our division. I think they’re horrible people. They paint their faces with neon when they added neon to their uniform. I think the whole 12th Man is bulls---. I just think it’s one of the worst fan bases in sports. I just can’t stand those people.”