Posts Tagged ‘Stand Up’

jeff dunhamThere is an avenue of comedy that hasn’t really been explored much and that is the act of Ventriloquism. Now I am not saying that it isn’t being practiced, but before 2007 or 05, had you heard of any famous Ventriloquist having comedy specials on Comedy Central? I’ll even let you think for a minute before I give you this next answer. Time is up and I didn’t think so. You couldn’t come up with anyone at the time other than Jeff Dunham, the world famous Ventriloquist with his famous puppets Bubba J, Walter, Peanut, Achmed the Dead Terrorist, and more. The only thing is that it has been a couple of years since his last comedy special and now Jeff has a new one that is a Netflix Original stand up special in Jeff Dunham: Relative Disaster where he performs in the country of Ireland and presents all of his friends and even a brand new puppet as they tackle topics like drinking, fatherhood, and even maybe the secret of Jeff’s own beginnings and so much more.

dunhamI am a huge fan of Jeff Dunham and I have laughed so many times at his comedy specials, but this one lives up to the name of the special. The thing that bothered me is that I could see him lipping everything that the dolls were saying. That was an issue for me because I saw a little girl belt out a song on America’s Got Talent and she did a better job than Jeff. That wasn’t the least of his troubles in this special, the problem is that he is trying to grow with the times considering he is a new dad, but it just wasn’t completely funny. The best segments of the special came with the new puppet Baby Sheamus, Peanut, and some of Achmed’s segment. The rest of it was just kind of boring and them going back and forth about Jeff being old and having kids at his age. This isn’t a terrible special, but some comedians just don’t transition well into that fatherhood stage of their careers. The Baby Sheamus was a nice touch and a nice way to win over the crowd in Ireland, it’ll be interesting to see how the show grows with that puppet. I think this special is worth a least one viewing or maybe two at most. I am going to give it an B- for a final grade.

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marc maronI have preached the brilliance of Netflix for a very long time now whether it be original movies, Original TV Series, documentaries, or even their original comedy specials. Earlier in the summer, Netflix had released a new series entitled G.L.O.W. that is loosely based on the all women’s wrestling show of the 80’s. One of the stars of that show is stand up comedian Marc Maron who is also the host of an amazing podcast called the WTF With Marc Maron. I instantly became a huge fan of his just from watching the show and when I heard that he had a comedy special on Netflix, I had to check it out. So for today’s Tuesday Stand Up, we are checking out his special Marc Maron: Too Real which was recorded at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood, CA. In the special, Marc tackles all sorts of topics like Donald Trump, hate groups, making decisions based on how long you have to live, being spiritual/meditating, fun, his father, media, The Rolling Stones, his mother, doctors, The Dave Matthews Band, stupid hats, cats, and so much more.

marc maron 2It has been quite some time since I had seen a comedy special and there have been times when I watch them, but I don’t review them. I knew I wanted to review this one because as I said above, I am a huge fan of his and his work. You don’t have to be smart to watch this comedy special, but it’s a smart comedy special. There is a lot of laughter in the wisdom of the brilliant Marc Maron and only intelligent people will get it for sure. One of my favorite topics that he gets into is when he starts reading his post it notes thoughts that he writes while driving. He gets into this whole conversation about Dave Matthews and I felt instantly like Marc understood my frustration behind that music. You’ll have to watch the special to know what I am referring to, but it was genius. The shtick he does on The Rolling Stones is great as you can see from the pic I provided to you guys in this paragraph. I definitely think you guys should give this special a shot and just check it out. It’s always good to have something different and with all the specials I have watched, he gives me something a little different. I am going to give the special an A for a final grade.

1There just seems to be a plethora of comedy specials that have been coming out lately in 2017 or it might just be the fact that Netflix knows I love stand up comedy. Nonetheless, there is a crap ton of comedy specials that I have to watch before the end of the year to decide who is up for Stand Up Special of the year. One of my all time favorite comedians from the late 90’s into the 2000’s was the legendary Dave Chappelle who disappeared for a while. In 2017, he returned with not one, but two comedy specials that were released together, but from two different locations. I had already covered the first comedy special that he did so it was only logical to tackle the second one which is titled Deep In The Heart Of Texas: Dave Chappelle Live At Austin City Limits. Filmed live from the legendary Austin City Limits, Dave tackles some of the most risque, but interesting topics like Aids and Ebola, Racism, Paula Dean, Donald Sterling, Lil Wayne, Banana incident, Snowball Incident, Ray Rice, the word pussy, male obgyn’s, gay bloggers, Michael Sams, getting extorted through VHS, masturbating and so much more in this hilarious special.

2If you are wondering how real the banana incident is then I want you to check out this article and take a peak at the clown who did it. I didn’t believe that it was real or maybe I just didn’t want to believe it because I figured people were better than that. There is always someone who proves me wrong from time to time. Dave is hilarious in the comedy special as always and he has a certain way of putting a funny twist to serious topics like the Michael Sams topic. He descried how he didn’t like what Ray Rice did, but then asked if Michael Sams assaulted the person he loved, would it be considered domestic violence or two dudes working out their issues? Dave Chappelle is also very socially aware and he sneaks some of that in when talking about certain subjects like AIDS vs Ebola with the quote of (and I am paraphrasing), it’s funny how AIDS comes out in the 80’s and only attacks blacks, gays, and drug addicts. He does have a very interesting point there when he says it, but let’s not forget that he is a comedic genius and it shines through. You have to love him because he also interacts with his crowd very well during the special like asking for a cigarette and getting a bunch tossed his way or just when he tries to explain the premise of his jokes. Check this one out for ssure on Netflix right now as we speak and I am giving the special an A- for a final grade.

hasan minhaj.pngThere is a lot of great programming that is being brought to us by Netflix that it’s absolutely ridiculous. Earlier in the year, we checked out a great comedy special by Vir Das who was just mind blowing in the way he delivered comedy. Vir Das though, is not the only person who is bringing cultural awareness to us on stage in the form of a comedy special. He is not the only one who is also bringing his culture to the forefront in the form of a comedy special because I want to welcome to everyone Indian American comedian Hasan Minhaj. If you do not know who Hasan Minhaj is then you need to get to know the Daily Show with Trevor Noah writer and correspondent. In his very first Netflix Original comedy special entitled Hasan Minhaj: Homecoming King, he travels home to Davis, California to deliver a special that tackles topics like getting married, arranged marriages, birthdays, an unexpected sister, Muslims vs Hindus, racism, Fox News, Bill Mahr, the internet, tough parents, the Daily Show, and so much more in this one hour special.

hasanI really liked the comedy special from Hasan because it offered you a much different perspective on what it is like to be an Indian in America. Vir Das gave you the perspective from an Immigrant who is navigating through the world kind of perspective while Hasan gives you the perspective of a kid who was born in America trying to understand the intricacies of his culture so that he can navigate through the world as he needs to. That is kind of the only way I can really discuss the differences between the two without going too deep. Hasan kind of gives you a real rude awakening to go with his comedy on what it was like to grow up in a country where some secretly hate you and others openly hate you.  One of my favorite parts of his show is when he is discussing the prom because it’s a huge story that kind of ties all that I have been talking about, but it has a very happy and promising ending to it, but it’s a great story. Hasan Minhaj is a great story teller that not only can make you laugh, but he can make you think as well. I am definitely a fan of his and will be checking out more from him in the future, but for now check out his special. I am going to give it an A for a final grade.

staying aliveEvery once in a while, Saturday Night Live will have a cast member that is so funny that he becomes a star right in front of our own very eyes like Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock, and even Tracy Morgan. They are able to transition from stand up to skit comedy all the way to movie stars, but when tragedy hits, it really sucks. That is what it seemed like for Tracy Morgan who was hit by a Walmart truck in an accident that almost killed the 30 Rock star. For a very long time, we wondered if Tracy would ever be the same again and whether he would bounce back or not. In his very first stand up comedy special since the accident, Tracy Morgan was back to prove that he still had it and Netflix was right there to support him with his very own Netflix comedy special Tracy Morgan: Staying Alive. In the special recorded at the Count Basie Theater in Red Bank, NJ, he tackles all sorts of subjects like meeting God while in a coma, being in heaven, Kim Khardashian and the others, the dark side of his family, Mike Tyson, Ancestory.com, therapy, Tiger Woods, Flavor Flav, strip clubs, Madonna, DUI, his first and current marriage, and so much more in this hilarious special.

staying alive 2I have to say that I loved the intro to the special only because I was a huge fan of the film Saturday Night Fever, but more importantly it’s just nice to see him back. I was a huge fan of Tracy;s when it came to his films so I honestly didn’t know what to expect out of the comedy special, but I was very happy when it was over. I say that because I honestly could not stop laughing at so many of his jokes. One of my favorite jokes of the night came when he was talking about his grandma and how she is always praying. He always tries to hide from her or pretend to be in the coma, but one day he had enough. He woke up and told her that he had met God in heaven before and she of course asked what he had told Tracy and he responded back. He said, “Tell your grandma to shut the fu** up. Between her and Tim Tebow, I can’t get any sleep.” It just stuff like that and when he talks about his various family members, it gets really funny. The punchlines to his jokes is where the true genius of him lies and the way he delivers them makes you unable to hold a straight face. I definitely suggest checking this special out from him if you get a chance. I am giving the special an A- for a final grade cause sometimes you need some dirty comedy in your life to counter act the smart comedy.

2017I have been asking myself for a week now, “who is going to top that stand up comedy special by Vir Das?” That is definitely a serious question to ask, but it also shows how great Netflix has been in the last five years as far as producing great content because I feel we might have another one today. In the last fifteen years or so, there has always been one constant in the world of comedy from whether it is having your own TV show on FX or producing great comedy specials, it’s that Louis C.K. has been a constant in our lives. Louis C.K. teams up with Netflix to produce what I believe to be his ninth overall hour or so long comedy special (I could be wrong, there could be more) in Louis C.K. 2017. In 2017, Louis talks to us about all sorts of interesting topics that range from abortions, the right to kill yourself, why you look stupid during beheadings, religion and how Christianity won, rescue dogs, drugs for dogs, stereotypes, public school teachers, Achilles, email fights, Magic Mike, and so much more in this hilarious special filmed live in Washington D.C.

louisI have been reading some of the reviews that are out there about this special and some of them I do have to disagree. Yeah sure, we are not all going to think that everything a comedian says is hilarious, but this was not a stupid comedy special. Louis definitely entertains in an only a way that he knows how to and that is connecting with his crowd. He does that through the various topics that he talks about and I think the abortion one was ballsy, but it’s 2017 so it’s not really a ballsy topic. One of my favorite topics that he covered in the special that I thought was funny was his whole bit on religion and how Christianity basically won that fight just because all you have to say is what year it is to validate that answer. I thought his bit on Magic Mike and why he can’t watch the whole film was hilarious and probably a dilemma that most males in the world go through. There were some very funny moments in the special, but then there were moments that you wanted him to move on and those were few and far between. I definitely think that this is a special that you should give a chance because he is hilarious. I am going to give the special an B+ (almost an A-) for a final grade.

vir dasIt’s been a little while since the last Tuesday Stand Up and to be honest there is a reason there wasn’t one last week and that is because I was disappointed with Amy Schumer’s latest effort. I however do not want to talk about that special because I think we have an interesting one here for all of you out there. Who here is familiar with the name Vir Das? If you are not familiar with the name Vir Das, then I do not blame you whatsoever, but that is the beauty of discovery especially with Netflix. Vir Das is an Indian Bollywood actor and comedian who has just recently released his very first Netflix Original Stand Up special that he hopes will educate us as well as entertain us called Vir Das: Abroad Understanding. The cool and unique thing about this special is that it wasn’t just filmed in one location. No, it was filmed in two different locations that are thousands of miles away from each other with the special filmed at the Indira Gandhi Stadium in New Delhi, India and also at the SubCulture in New York City. The special bounces back and forth as Vir tackles subjects like American Women, Donald Trump, Hollywood Vs India, religious phobias, religious texts, Christmas, breakfast, the appeal of American food vs Indian food, children, racism, french kiss, and so much more.

vir das 2One of the things I loved about this special is some awesome quotes from him that I just couldn’t forget like the opening one, “once you go brown, the other colors let you down.” While that may not be funny to you, I thought it was clever as hell. The other quote that comes later is when he is talking about how Jesus has been replaced and forgotten in favor of Christmas trees in America. The quote is basically a hindu cabby talking to Jesus saying, “This is the second time in your life you were defeated by a piece of wood.” The man is smart and he is engaging which is the best part of the special in general. He is not afraid to engage his own people when it comes to social topics in India as he engages the American crowd about our own issues like electing Donald Trump or what we identify as racism. All I am saying to all of you out there is that this is an example of smart comedy vs stupid and perverted comedy which isn’t a bad thing to be into cause those can be funny too. I just think Vir Das is someone that everyone should give a chance cause he is the alternative to Russell Peters and Aziz Ansari. I am going to give the special an A for a final grade, check it out on Netflix right now.