Stand-up comedian Nate Bargatze released a hilarious Netflix special on Tuesday titled “A Tennessee Boy.” While he’s made other smaller appearances, the special marks Bargatze’s first full-hour of stand-up on Netflix. The title “The Tennessee Kid” was inspired after Bargatze decided to move from New York City back to Tennessee with his wife to raise their newborn daughter. Old Hickory, Tennessee is where the comedian originally grew up. His daughter, who is now six years old, makes an adorable introduction for her dad at the beginning of the special. This was a nice touch that made Bargatze’s jokes about his family feel that much more relatable for the audience.
Bargatze is known around the comedy community for his multiple appearances on talk shows “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” and “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.” In 2014 he won both the New York Comedy Festival and the Boston Comedy Festival. This success led to a 30-minute segment of his stand up being used for the Netflix series “The Standups” in 2017.
One of the more interesting aspects of Bargatze’s special is how clean his topics are. There is not a lot of swearing throughout the entirety of the hour-long special. Bargatze also manages to steer clear of the extremely vulgar topics that some comics rely on heavily. Instead he opts to tell stories about more relatable topics like problems with boarding airplanes, telling his daughter sad news and simple arguments with his wife. His subtle and clever remarks throughout each story does an excellent job at keeping the audience laughing for the full hour long special.
One of the most hilarious and underrated aspect of the entire special was Bargatze’s deadpan delivery on all of his punchlines. He managed to keep a straight face during the entire special. It was almost like he wasn’t even trying to be funny. This made his comedy come off as so natural to the audience. It was clear that Bargatze is a seasoned comedy veteran and that he is very comfortable with his material, and this confidence goes a long way toward winning over a crowd.
There is something to be said about a comedian who is able to make someone watching a Netflix special by themselves laugh out loud. Stand-up comedy is made to be viewed by a large group of people together. This is because laughter is contagious in groups. When a comic is able to make a viewer laugh when they’re all by themselves (which Bargatze managed to do plenty of times throughout this special), it’s clear they have really strong material.
Ultimately, Bargatze will leave viewers extremely impressed and craving more of his deadpan humor. One of the most impressive aspects of “A Tennessee Boy” is that he is able to crack the audience up without using tons of explicit content. This seems to be a rare skill in comedy nowadays. His straight-face delivery and subtle confidence up on stage are a unique combination. Hopefully, this is the first of many full length Netflix specials on the horizon for Nate Bargatze.
Matt Souvigney is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.