Sunday, July 16, 2017
Silverman has become a "serious actress," but last night I watched her Netflix stand-up special A Speck of Dust. It was a delightfully vulgar 70 minutes, ending with her asking the only man in the audience who believed in God (or at least raised his hand) if he would let God come in his mouth.
But there was much more. She covered a range of topics, mostly about her own life. She talked about visiting a laser hair removal clinic (the highest-rated one within three blocks of her home), her experiences as a bed-wetter at summer camp, her dog, who turned her on to squirrels (she says that squirrels are like cokeheads--they only remember where 80 percent of the nuts they bury are).
She also spends a long section talking about a life-threatening emergency she had, when an abscess in her windpipe nearly killed her. She was rushed into emergency surgery, but felt her preparatory anesthetic wasn't strong enough. "I'm not high enough!" she wailed, and to prove it, she discussed Brexit in great detail (this is all proven by the videotape which is shown during the closing credits).
She performed before a very appreciative audience--it almost sounded as if the laughter was sweetened. It was a good audience though--when she was telling a story about her sister in college, that seemed to be leading to a rape story, but instead turned into a shitting-one's-pants story, she was amazed at how quiet they got. "That's called a relief laugh," she said, analyzing her comedy mid-stream. She has an endearing quality of saying "put a pin in that," so she can come back to a topic after a digression.
Silverman has gotten in trouble on occasions. In the film The Aristocrats she jokingly accused talk show host Joe Franklin of raping her, and he didn't get the joke. She also used the word "chink" in her act in an ironic way, which made the Media Action Network for Asian Americans angry, again, for not understanding the joke. During her act she said that comedians have to be careful, and apologized for the metal detectors that the audience had to pass through.
Silverman has covered it all-stand-up, sketch comedy (she was a short-lived performer on SNL, which didn't know how to use her), her own sit-com, and now movies. I'm not sure what her best venue is, perhaps just having her stand in front of a crowd and talk about her life.
And she's now dating Michael Sheen. That just doesn't sound right. He was married to Kate Beckinsale. It seems wrong.