You might know Brené Brown from her viral TED talk, her bestselling books, or even her cameo in the Netflix comedy Wine Country. Well soon a generation will know her from her stand up comedy. That’s right, Brené Brown, researcher, writer and storyteller can now add stand up comedian to the list. Following the success of her first Netflix special, Brené Brown: The Call to Courage, Brown and Netflix struck a deal for a second special. Brown’s first special was an insightful talk mixed with humor but her second special is straight up knee slapping comedy. Brené Brown: Gratitude Adjustment will be released on December 15th, just in time for the holidays.
Though many are learning of the career shift through the announcement of her second special, Brown has been workshopping her stand up across the country for the past year. Kelly Cohen saw Brown perform in New York City. “It was surreal. One of the comedians finished her set then out walks Brené Brown. It kind of felt like when a seasoned comedian like Jerry Seinfeld surprises an audience by dropping in to work on new material. But it was confusing because it was like, wait she does stand up now?” But once Brown got started, Cohen was no longer confused. “Oh it was so f—ing good. It was kind of like a reverse Nanette.”
Having screened Brown’s new special in advance, I can attest to the fact that Brown’s stand up is, in fact, so f—ing good. Brown takes the stage to “Step In The Arena” by Gang Starr and delivers an impressive high energy performance. She works the crowd so well you would never know she is a self-proclaimed introvert. About halfway through, Brown is interrupted by a heckler but in her typical no-nonsense fashion, she was having absolutely none of it. It was the most skillful handling of a heckler I have seen. She isolated this man’s insecurities but then gave him tools to work through them. Charming and disarming, Brown masterfully navigated her way through the situation and back to her set.
In her first special, Brown urged us to answer the call to courage. Well she leads by example and does just that in Gratitude Adjustment. Do yourself a favor and watch this special. Her shame resilience work might make you cry until you laugh, but her stand up will make you laugh until you cry.