Last Friday Bo Burnham's new comedy special "Make Happy" was released on Netflix. The special is consistent with Bo Burnham's style from his previous acts, as it juxtaposes raw, dark emotion with intentionally immature gags as to better amplify his critiques of performance and entertainment.
"Make Happy" is not only energetically hilarious, but it forces the audience to reconsider their notions of comedy and how it can act to reflect and critique life as a whole. Compared to his previous specials, "Make Happy" is ironically much heavier. "Make Happy" exhibits a great amount of existential anxiety and tortured self-awareness, as Bo Burnham tears down modern conceptions of what it means to be happy. While the performance may not necessarily prove to make happy, it certainly functions to dismantle sad.
If that doesn't have you intrigued already, here are some more reasons why "Make Happy" is worth a watch:
1. For a good laugh
Whether he's singing at his piano, rapping through dramatic light shows or pantomiming the making of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich while under the influence, Bo Burnham's special will keep you laughing.
2. To check your privilege
Bo Burnham's work is always phenomenally socially aware, and "Make Happy" is no exception.
3. If you're still trying to understand the concept of meta
Is it too meta to discuss the meta-ness of the performance within the performance about performing? Regardless, the self-awareness of "Make Happy" is as intellectually stimulating as it is refreshing.
4. To examine the human condition
Bo Burnham illuminates how members of modern society attempt to create meaning through incessantly performing for one another on social media.
5. To examine depression in the context of a post-modern society
Or, as Bo Burnham goes on to explain after this song in his act, "Don't."
6. For brilliant commentary on every facet of the entertainment industry
From over produced shows to beat fetishism in hip hop to inauthentic
stadium country music, no genre is left unscathed in "Make Happy."
7. And for brilliant commentary on just about everything else
8. If you want to get new songs stuck in your head
9. To initiate an existential crisis
What is the meaning of life? What is happiness? Bo Burnham riddles his act with these difficult questions and begs us to question not only the concept of happiness in the abstract, but also how it relates to comedy.
10. To find some existential relief
Misery loves company, and Bo Burnham seems like he's more than happy to join all of us on our crazy search pursuit of an elusive sense of self-worth.
11. To enjoy an incredible performance from a continually groundbreaking comic and entertainer
Bo Burnham never fails to shake his audience out of the familiar and throw them into the purely absurd. "Make Happy" does not disappoint as another example of Bo Burnham's quest to examine life through the medium of comedy.
12. Because you can stream it on Netflix right now
As if you had better plans.