Five of the best stand-up shows on Netflix
- Brian Donaldson
- 17 July 2015
A handful of top comedy sets, with shows from an 80s icon to a contemporary whizzkid
Stand-up is a health category in its own right under Netflix's massive 'comedy' tag. Here, Brian Donaldson looks at five of the best out there.
1. BO BURNHAM: WHAT
Musical comedy’s enfant terrific delivers a blistering multi-media masterpiece with short songs about fire and longer numbers about sadness, Burnham continually undercutting his stage persona and remoulding the art of live comedy. It also features a peerless visual and aural gag about video editors that will warrant a second blissful viewing.
Choice line: ‘Pain, genocide, war, racism, sexism. Got to remember there’s good things about the world, too. Like the fact none of that’s happening to me. Score!’’
2. LOUIS CK: LIVE AT THE BEACON THEATER
Struggling with the fear of getting older and frailer (both psychologically and physically) and convinced that he’s becoming a worse and worse person, it’s clear that Louis CK must not be allowed to cheer up given the continued quality of his stand-up.
Choice line: ‘I want to be the Willy Wonka for perverts.’
3. FRANKIE BOYLE: THE LAST DAYS OF SODOM
Amid the Netflix wave of American stand-up (the good, the bad and the godawful ugly) strides Francis Patrick’s torrent of hilariously misanthropic bile. Not many comics can get away with having punchlines which include the words ‘burns ward’, ‘wanking’ and ‘AIDS’. It’s a matter of debate as to whether Boyle does as well.
Choice line: ‘I fucking hate people.’
4. RICHARD PRYOR: LIVE ON THE SUNSET STRIP
It might have opening credits which remind you of The Streets of San Francisco, but therein lies a Lazarus-like performance from the iconic comedian. Back onstage for the first time since setting himself on fire during a freebasing cocaine incident that went slightly awry, he reveals the truth about that night with a raw and visceral honesty.
Choice line: ‘Fire is inspirational. They should use it in the Olympics.’
5. NICK THUNE: FOLK HERO
Something of a lower-key DIY affair than the blockbuster shows above. Seattle’s Thune is possibly best described as Zach Galifianakis with a guitar rather than a piano. Delightful quips, quality non-sequiturs and the real problems of having a sign interpreter at a comedy show.
Choice line: Recently I made the decision of moving closer to my bank; I thought it would be easier to laugh the whole way there.’
See all these shows and more on Netflix.com