29. Mike Birbiglia: Thank God for Jokes
Netflix loves Mike Birbiglia, as you’ll see later in this list, and in his first Netflix special, he loves us right back with a 70-minute special that had me laughing throughout. I love his conversational approach to stand-up and his delivery and tone make him one of the best comedians working today.
Birbiglia cautions all aspiring comedians that if you’re planning on telling a joke or being funny in any way shape or form, you can never end your joke with “I’m joking.” Beyond that, Birbiglia gives some lessons about the art of joke-telling and the lengths you’ll go to get a laugh.
That includes making jokes about Jesus being a socialist who talked like Woody Allen, which makes me laugh when I think of that part of his special. Or his brother’s improvised lyrics to his favorite hymn at church. Plus, you can’t beat all the cat puns or the crowd work when he teased one unlucky guy who referred to an officer as a lady cop and wouldn’t let him live it down. It was priceless.
Moreover, Birbiglia cautions you have to preface the context with these jokes because anyone will be offended by anything.
Next: Marc Maron: Too Real