Michelle Buteau just turned forty and will not be wearing anything with buttons anymore. She makes that clear at the start of her bite-sized Netflix stand-up special, released 2018, the first in a series like it called The Comedy Lineup.
The special is about fifteen minutes in length but manages to cover a lot of content. After talking about a need for comfort as she ages when it comes to letting her “tig ol biddies” breathe, she also touches on the fact men should keep it in their pants, her “recent” marriage of over seven years ago, the full story of her engagement and how she reacted when her OBGYN told her he was a Trump supporter while in the middle of a “pap schmear.”
Buteau also spends time interacting with the audience for mixed results. The first time she spoke to a man in the audience created a funny moment as the audience member seemed to appreciate the joke, even at his expense. It was a decidedly planned interaction, but it landed well and created a great wrap up for that part of her set on a strong note.
The second attempt, however, seemed to fall flat as the joke was on a touchier topic. When the camera panned to the audience members that the joke targeted, dulled expressions showed they didn’t enjoy the moment. It made me cringe and ruined some momentum.
Her combination of pop culture references and crude statements were funny but straightforward. Buteau’s best moments were when she had a chance to play up her character using her vocal and energy range. She plays off the crowd well to keep energy and laughs up in a fun way, even if the jokes don’t divert expectations in a particularly brilliant way.
There are, however, some moments that seem to drag on without any great punchlines or surprises. In a short special like that, those can feel even longer.
Overall, it was definitely worth watching. This idea of short stand-up sets with easy accessibility is a great way to binge-watch or get some new and funny content into your busy day. I’d argue that it’s more enjoyable than watching short clips because it provides a well-rounded compilation that only a planned set can provide.
With plenty of comics to choose from, even if Michelle Buteau’s loud and lewd style isn’t your cup of tea, someone surely will be.