After recently watching Ali Wong’s latest Netflix stand up special, the Netflix’s algorithm suggested this other stand up called Hari Kondabolu. To be honest, I’ve only heard of him once through a special Sporkful podcast live episode. In the podcast, he sounded like he’d be a hilarious guy to listen to but I never really thought much further than that. So with Netflix telling me that I might like his stand up special, who am I to go against an algorithm?
So Kondabolu’s special reminds me of Hasan Minhaj’s Netflix special. Both use their immigrant and cultural background to poke fun of these stereotypes in a hilarious fashion. For example, Kondabolu’s first joke was absolutely brilliant because he took me in a totally different direction than what I had expected it to be. Since Kondabolu is an Indian American, I think the “High Expectations Asian Dad” meme also applies to him. If you don’t know this meme, it’s basically a cultural stereotype of Asian father’s (Chinese, Indian, Korean, etc) expecting ONLY the best results from their kid… and by best I mean A+ only. So his first joke about “how many people were in attendance?” threw me off when he didn’t go this route. Yet he maintained the cultural stereotype perfectly! Kondabolu’s jokes though are much more “aggressive/edgier” than Minhaj’s. But that’s just the style of their stand up.
As I watch these stand up specials, I find that the immigrant comedians (Russell Peters, Hasan Minhaj, Margaret Cho) tend to be funnier than those who aren’t immigrants. It’s specifically related to the fact that I can relate to their experiences as an immigrant.