Every comedian has their style and tone. Every comedian has the gimmick for which they hang their routine. As of late, we have had stand-up routines that use the comedian’s mental health as that springboard. In a total change of pace Yvonne Orji (INSECURE’s Molly Carter) offers a different approach. She uses her Nigerian heritage as her tool to present her 1-hour HBO stand-up stint and hopefully unleashes your laughter.
Her set was staged at the Howard Theater in Washington D. C. to a happy crowd. She bursts onstage to her into music and the house shouts out. They are there for her and engaged for what she offers. During her set she uses repetitive phrases that the audience quickly picked up on and fills in the blank when those phrases pop up later in the set; that is how tuned in they are to her routine. And she delivers it wittily and punched with the right timing and interaction. She wasn’t an actor first; she was a stand-up and she knows the craft.
She knows her subject also. Her family is the base for her jokes and she gives us a look at a colorful Nigerian family, mainly her mother & father. Since most of us know little of Nigeria, its customs and such this vehicle is a novel approach – not that other comedians don’t tap from the family well for their stuff, but Nigerian? For the home audience we get home footage from Lagos, Nigeria and in the home of Orji’s parents. Talking about, dating, finances and work is dime-a-dozen but put through the filter of the Nigerian outlook singles this special out Good, wise call there, Yvonne.
She talks about her parent’s initial disappointment with her profession, her single status and such and then in the clip hear it from their perspective as well.
So, YVONNE ORJI: MOMMA, I MADE IT is a fresh, fun special that is worth a look if you’re a fan of INSECURE or good stand-up. Find it on HBO, HBONow/Go, HBOmax and On Demand.