Hannibal Buress, His Fame, And His Netflix Special

Hannibal Buress!

One of my favorite comedians. His special came out (yesterday? two days ago? yes, two days ago) on Netflix and I watched the first 20 minutes or so last night before I fell asleep. How quickly I fell asleep was unrelated to the goodness of the special. However, I feel like I’ve seen him do better. On Joe Rogan’s podcast, I remembered him describing this as his “sweatiest” special, so you know he’s working hard. There was one bit I remember about how one time no one would let him into a particular hotel because he didn’t have his ID…something like “yes I’ve gone on TV with the alias Hannibal Buress just so I could check into this hotel.” I really liked that one. And hey, I haven’t seen the whole thing, so maybe the rest is absolutely fantastic and I’m being unfair.

This Splitsider interview came out a couple of days ago to promote the special. It’s about Buress and dealing with fame. It’s pretty fun.

Now here’s the trailer for the special. If my dumb blog post didn’t get you excited enough to head over to Netflix this will, probably. I’m not sure. Probably.

The Sam Kinison Collection

“His gigs were part strip show, part heavy-metal concert, all primal-scream therapy.”

If you’re young and don’t know anything like me, you might never have heard of Sam Kinison. I heard about him once when I started comedy and now I have one of his comedy records and we get along just swell. Kinison is up there with the greatest comedians of all time. Why? I actually don’t know. I actually don’t find him very funny. But I do think he’s unlike anyone I’ve ever seen and if I was friends with him I know I’d think he was hilarious. That’s why I like listening to him so much.

I know my mom wouldn’t like him because he screams and yells all the time in his stand up, something he might have picked up as a short-lived Pentecostal preacher. Kinison was a weird, crazy guy and he died too young and too suddenly.

He did a lot of stand up. And something I didn’t know until reading this article was that apparently every one of his sets was different. That’s insane. He told different jokes every time he was on stage. So, a lot of his material has been lost over the years, especially since not everything was video recorded in the 80’s (that’s why you can’t find too much of his stand up online and why I’ve gone to albums).

Comedy Dynamics is coming out with The Sam Kinison Comedy Collection, which will pull together all his “lost” specials. Apparently there will be a bunch of stuff that hasn’t really been seen before. How do they do that? I don’t know. But it sounds cool and I’ll be looking forward to it.

Here’s some of his stuff. By the way…sorry if you’re like, “Duh! I KNOW who Sam Kinison is!” But it’s better for me to pretend you don’t than to pretend you do. And hey, you get to see a little more of him! Lucky you!

Reggie Watts’ Why Shit So Crazy Is Great

Do you like funny music? Have you heard of Reggie Watts? He might be my favorite musical comedian because of his ridiculous, fresh approach to comedy.

If you’ve never seen him before, you need to see his Netflix special, Why Shit So Crazy. He uses a looping machine to beatbox entire songs of himself singing and playing on the keyboard. It’s a lot of “whoa, that’s awesome” moments mixed with “what the fuck is he doing, this is hilarious” moments. It isn’t just music that’s special, though. He starts out the set by just rambling on stage pretty incoherently for a while, saying “crazy shit” that doesn’t really make much sense until people start to laugh at it. Was “incoherent” and “doesn’t really make sense” redundant? Well now it certainly is.

One of my favorite parts in the special is where he fumbles around with his microphone for several minutes straight. You can find the video on YouTube currently, although who knows how long those videos will last.

John Mulaney: The Comeback Kid Now Out On Netflix

This past Friday, John Mulaney’s new special, The Comeback Kid came out on Netflix. What makes it cool is that it’s kind of like a small theater film. I really loved the intro to the special. Without ruining too much, the special was shot in Chicago and there are a bunch of artsy clips. I donno: It worked. I’m from Chicago too. I thought it was classy. And there was a talking dog. That’s hard to do.

The stand up itself was good: I’ve heard some of the jokes before, but hey that happens. He closed on ten minutes about when he met Bill Clinton, which is a great joke. It’s also why he titled the special the way he did: you’ll see. I also think it’s sort of his comeback to stand up comedy after his television show was taken off the air.

If you’re like “whoa I need more convincing,” here’s an article about the special. Check it out on Netflix!

The Comic Who Amy Schumer “Stole From”

A lot of people who aren’t as knowledgeable about comedy today – especially the younger audiences – have never heard of Patrice O’Neal because he died young in 2011, at which time he hadn’t produced a ton of material. But comics pretty much all know and love his work. And I’m one of his fans.

He recently came up in the news for being the original source of a joke that Amy Schumer allegedly stole…which comics think is ridiculous.

Know Patrice for what he should be known for: good comedy. Check out his special Elephant in the Room.


Master Class in Crowd Work

Todd Barry is a touring, headlining comic who most people know as “that comic guy from Louie.” He has a very flat, deadpan delivery but he does it better than most people I’ve heard. He sounds super sarcastic and a little like me but even drier, so maybe that’s partly why I like him.

His delivery is what makes his crowd work so impressive to me. With such a flat delivery it forces the conversation to be funny because of what Barry says and discovers. The crowd work really has content. Barry isn’t just being silly on stage, he’s quick and intuitive.

Speaking of Louie, Louis CK actually released Todd Barry: The Crowd Work Tour on his website for $5. You can also find it on Netflix. Or, I found it on YouTube as well. I’ll link that below, but who knows when it will disappear! Whoever uploaded the video to YouTube also put “Best Comedian Ever” in the title of the video, so take that as you will.

How to Get a Comedy Central Half Hour

Here’s an article that I found that was written by Adam Newman, a comic who recently recorded his Comedy Central half hour. Half hours are a huge deal in the industry because Comedy Central gets your name out there. You probably have never heard of Adam Newman, even though he’s a fantastic comic who has performed on several late night talk shows.

In the article Newman describes the process for submitting to Comedy Central and discusses his approach for the submission video. I hadn’t heard of ComedianU before I read this article, which seems blasphemous. It looks like a fantastically cool site and now I’m going to check it out all the time!

Read How Adam Newman Got His Half Hour Special On Comedy Central here.

Paul F. Tompkins on Peanut Brittle

The first time I heard Paul F. Tompkins was in the car on the way home from a comic’s retreat in upstate New York. Never before had I heard a guy who was so willing to push a joke concept to the extreme. He just seems to keep hammering a concept until you’re forced to laugh.

This is a fantastic bit of his about peanut brittle. Enjoy.

Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo Now On HBO

Amy Schumer has been everywhere this year. Trainwreck, Saturday Night Live, Inside Amy Schumer, and a million different talk shows.

Her new stand up special, Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo came out yesterday on HBO. Someone with HBO, hook me up?

Here’s her trailer for it.

Fun fact: Amy Schumer used to date Anthony Jeselnik, who’s special came out the day before on Netflix.

Anthony Jeselnik’s Special Comes Out Today on Netflix

If you don’t know Anthony Jeselnik, you might know the witty asshole who hosted this past season of Last Comic Standing. That’s Anthony Jeselnik. He was also the creator and star of the show The Jeselnik Offensive.

If you love “I can’t believe he just said that” humor, you’ll love Jeselnik. He’s absurdly taboo. He makes Joan Rivers look like a sweet old grandmother. Speaking of which, he probably has jokes about Joan Rivers dying. Rape, abuse, cancer – it’s all in his sets. He’s the worst nightmare of the FCC.

To give you a little taste of what he’s all about, this is what Jeselnik tweeted on the day of the Boston Marathon bombing:

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Here’s the trailer for the special’s release on Netflix. It’s called Anthony Jeselnik: Thoughts and Prayers. In this interview, Jeselnik describes his Netflix special as “the darkest thing I’ve ever done.”