2017 isn’t so much a comedy special but the amusing musings of Louis C.K. which range from why he could not be a gay man, his complicated feelings on abortion, parenthood, suicide, religion, and relationships. Which will make you laugh but, at times, more so think about his out there perspectives.
At 49, Louis C.K. has lived an interesting life. He was married, had a Mexican Jew for a father, he has two kids, but you know, through it all, death was an option. I mean, what better way would there have been to win an argument with his dad, ex-wife, or his children? But speaking of children, abortion. He opens up with this topic and while he wavers back and forth on it, like picking one side is just too difficult, he is thankful that it is the last line of defense against shitty people in the species.
And pretty much that is what you get. Louis C.K. touches on a handful of issues almost all comedians do, marriage, kids, gay and trans people, but he keeps it tasteful. He may do an offensive accent here and there, but what Louis C.K. does isn’t your usual “Let me tell you this story and put a few jokes inside.” No. Instead, it is like he is talking to himself and you are this imaginary figure in his head he is bouncing ideas off of. Some of which are comical and insightful while others weird and eyebrow raising. Yet, it all is nothing but his truth.
[…] abortion is the last line of defense against shitty people in the species.
It Makes You Laugh As Much As It Makes You Think
Most comedians are decent storytellers but their bread and butter come from making you laugh. With Louis C.K., he takes a very different approach. As seen in his show Louie, he doesn’t just pick on the odd things about life and gives you his thought out theories. If anything, it seems like Louis works from an outline and you are on that journey with him trying to understand the things in the world which don’t make sense. Take for example the fact that every religion in the world, including the Jews, us the A.D. system to say what year it is. You never think about that kind of stuff and while there are a handful of jokes attached, Louis C.K. approaches his subjects less like a comedian and sort of like a college professor, the memorable eccentric kind, who wants to open your mind to how absurd some things in society are.
Heck, just to through another example in there, his whole bit about suicide, as uncomfortable as the topic is after watching Thirteen Reasons Why, it will make you think and chuckle. Even as he says stuff dealing with questioning why people who seemingly lived horrible lives haven’t done yet, he finds some sort of comic relief even as he drives us through some of his dark thoughts. The kind only comedians talk about, on stage, in front of a camera. Which, again, with Louis C.K. it sometimes doesn’t even seem like the point of his comedy is telling a joke. It honestly seems like he is trying to ask his audience “Surely, it isn’t just me?”
On The Fence
He is as Awkward As Ever
One of the weird things, perhaps the most uncomfortable, when it comes to Louis C.K.’s musings deals with homosexuality. Now, unlike Dave Chappelle and many other male comedians, there isn’t this poking fun at those who are homosexual or trans. If anything, there seems to be a genuine curiosity. Like, for at least 15 or so minutes, the topic is penises and how the only thing perhaps keeping him from being a gay man is he doesn’t like the look of penises and doesn’t want to be the bottom during anal sex. And I mean, literally, he talks about how the idea seems sort of nice to him. Calling someone his boyfriend, this guy bigger than him hugging him and him wearing his oversized jacket, and it is a bit weird and awkward.
Yet, I think it is only because so many male comedians try to counteract the fact that being so open makes them vulnerable with trying to prove they are still a man. Hence why, from Eddie Murphy to Dave Chappelle, they joke about gay people to make them an other, to distance any sort of correlation. Yet with Louis C.K., be it because he is 49, tried the traditional married with kids route, and it didn’t work, he thinks of what it may be like to have a boyfriend in his life. For Louis C.K. doesn’t give a damn and unlike many comedians who get on stage and poke fun at themselves, Louis C.K. is perhaps the closest thing this generation may get to a Richard Pryor. For he is raw, blunt, can be offensive, but it doesn’t seem like the goal is to offend you, much less to offend anyone for a laugh. What he wants is a connection to his audience and to show them Louis C.K. the person and not some zany persona which lives solely on stage is essentially a costume.
Overall: Positive (Watch It)
Though a bit uncomfortable at times, especially as it seems Louis C.K. is realizing he might be a little gay and is coming out in a comedy special, he proves that if you want to talk about the best comedians out today, his name needs to be in the conversation. For he reminds you that comedy isn’t just about jokes or embellished stories about things the comedian went through. Comedy is a thinking person’s game. It is about being retrospective, observing the world and understanding oneself, and figuring out how to expose others to your discoveries. All the while, making it entertaining. Which, Louis C.K. does and leaves you wanting more. Especially in the form of his TV show for while his musings, which barely seem planned past what is necessary, are well executed, there is this need to see them curated further and put into well thought out ideas that are played out by more than just him.