The Hottest New Standup Specials Streaming Now
That comedy is so hot right now, comedy. Seriously, stand-up specials are streaming everywhere: HBO, Netflix, my bathtub in the middle of the workday. We just can’t get enough. It sure beats the hell out of binging all day. Unless, of course, you’re binging on stand-up comedy all day.
From the heavy hitters like Chris Rock and Ricky Gervais to the quasi-familiar faces like John Mulaney (aren’t you just adorable?) and that woman who’s seemingly always pregnant, there’s a little taste of all things new in the standup world right here, right now.
Hop in deep for our latest stand-up staff picks (don’t worry, there are no Vincent’s Picks) and binge harder than you’ve ever binged before. Because Ali Wong is a stud, and Natasha Leggero’s new companion comedy collection is a real home-run. And then we sprinkled in some newcomers you’ve probably never seen that you might like to try on for size. If they don’t fit, send them back (with a receipt).
That right, it’s comedy hour here at Mandatory, and we’re going all day and all night until either we pass out or piss ourselves. Hopefully both, but not in that order.
"Chris Rock "Tamborine" (Netflix)"
After a lengthy dark period, the comedy king is back with some serious relationship advise: "You should be fucking."
Without covering too many topics, Rock stays close to home with his most personal, vulnerable work and the most introspective honesty yet: "Nobody gives a fuck about you."
"John Mulaney "Kid Gorgeous At Radio City" (Netflix)"
Photo: via Netflix
In his third major special, the kid from Chicago unloads some gorgeous jokes at New York's decadent Radio City Music Hall. His first two specials were chock full of fun, but this mature departure reminds us this cornfed midwesterner can write with the best of them after his work with SNL.
"Ali Wong "Hard Knock Wife" (Netflix)"
If being pregnant and performing standup were a ritual, Ali Wong coined it. Now that she's a both a momma and a sugar momma, this round two preggers has some bones to pick and throw out.
"Kevin James "Never Don't Give Up" (Netflix)"
Photo: via Netflix
The king of Queens is back, and he's leaner than ever. But he'll still talk about food as much as you'll let him.
"TJ Miller "Meticulously Ridiculous" (HBO)"
The Class Clown Award goes to none other than TJ Miller, a man who isn't afraid to spray water on his face for a laugh on an 8 am talk show. His new special on HBO is awkwardly hilarious, nonstop fun and, quite frankly, the bravest thing you'll see on HBO besides How to Make It in America.
"Hari Kondabolu "Warn Your Relatives" (Netflix)"
Photo: via Netflix
Comedy isn't always black and white, which we're seeing from this fresh face, big Hari! With some Indian humor and a fun anecdote about being somehow mistaken for Kid Rock, it's nice to see Netflix open the doors a little wider. Sweet, smart laughs from a self-proclaimed "handsome muppet," what could be better?
"Ricky Gervais "Humanity" (Netflix)"
If he's not hosting an awards show ripping on people, you just assume he's somewhere in the world ripping on people. Not entirely true. He had time to make a stand-up special, some of which involves ripping on people. "Humanity," an ironic title.
It still doesn't explain his ear piece. What is this, a motivational talk about how shitty of a person I am with out-of-shape choreography interludes? Just kidding, but seriously, plenty of AIDS jokes.
"James Acaster "Repertoire" (Netflix)"
In a four-part collection, we get inside the head of England's court jester and a corduroy green blazer (I have that blazer! That better not be my blazer!). It's like watching a young Michael Caine on co-caine, love-ly!
"Seth Rogen's Hilarity for Charity (Netflix)"
What a pile of shit. But! It's for charity.
Kidding. Love ya, Seth.
"The Honeymoon Standup Special (Netflix)"
Natasha Leggero and Moshe Kasher's tag-team comedy is boundless in its laughs as it appeals to all sorts of folks: hipsters and hepcats and, OK, just weirdo millennials.
A three-parter including two solo bits and a couples roast, these two are just the best couple (and of course she's preggers, too). They makes all relationships look fun: smoking while pregnant, having kids with a few glitches, Trump hating. Always a good time.