My only exposure to Jen Kirkman until now has been on Comedy Central’s late night game show @Midnight hosted by Chris Hardwick, but she’s always done really well on there so I was excited when I saw that she did a special for Netflix. Also, I hadn’t watched many female comics until recently, and the only way I was really introduced to them was through @Midnight, and Hardwick’s Nerdist Podcast.
I knew Kirkman’s comedy wasn’t the Jeff Foxworthy-type stuff that’d I’d grown up to listening with my family in the car (although we did listen to quite a bit of Lewis Black), but I had never seen her actual act on stage — until now. And I really enjoyed it.
She didn’t hold back on anything: being divorced, not wanting kids, what turning 40 did to her, and many more subjects. She’s probably considered a dirty comic. Now, not dirty in the Bob Saget way, but it’s not something I’d watch with my family (I still refuse to watch the American Pie franchise with my parents). I would go into details, but you should just watch it for yourself (there’s also a good chance people I know may read this, and there are some things I don’t want brought up in conversation. Although this side comment could prove very counterproductive in my attempt to make sure those things aren’t discussed.)
The other thing I liked about her set was that she was very lively; she didn’t just stand by the microphone stand the whole time. She worked the stage very well, constantly moving from side to side. Her mixture of storytelling and revealing what her inner monologue was at the time made for some of the best parts due to how seamlessly she switched from each one. There were also plenty observations she made that made you think of the topic in a different way (the one on alternative parenting styles was particularly enjoyable).
If you don’t normally watch female comedians, then this is a great place to start. And she’s only 40, so you’ll have plenty of time to catch her perform. Her special is available on Netflix now.