John Mulaney starts from scratch

John Mulaney’s recent comedy tour, “From Scratch,” is evidence that he remains “The Comeback Kid” of the comedy scene. From selling merchandise saying, “I saw him right after he got outta rehab,” he does not hesitate to unpack every aspect of his addiction and recovery creating an intimate connection between the esteemed comedian and his audience.

As live shows tend to go, a little mishap occurred at his second Long Beach show on Nov. 16. Mulaney had admittedly gotten distracted before his entrance and forgot to put on a tie, an important variable to his iconic clean cut suit outfit. What might be an inconvenience to one comedian, Mulaney seamlessly used to his advantage to crack more jokes and shamelessly beg the audience to buy his merchandise. A small moment like that could have made for an awkward environment, but it only added to Mulaney’s persona.

When the news broke of Mulaney’s addiction, rehab and even pregnancy with his recent girlfriend, fans were shocked to find their favorite comedian had a new lifestyle. Mulaney even joked that he received mixed reviews on his newborn. However, Mulaney showed no bad blood over the opinion the media had formed on him which helped to preserve his iconic and classy stage identity.

What makes this tour stand heads above his other specials is his consistent theme. Over half the show is dedicated to his addiction stories, whether they are from his wildest nights, the rehab center or his star-studded drug interventions with names that will make your jaw drop. He takes the situation that all comedy fans were heartbroken to hear about and mends their pain with an hour and a half of endless laughter on his own downfall. Running all around the stage, constantly fiddling with his microphone wire, imitating an inaccurate Al Pacino and interacting with young kids in the front rows all contributed to make this show so unique and enjoyable.

As the show came to its natural end, Mulaney stopped to genuinely thank the audience for joining him especially after what he recently endured. This moment had an immediate shift from the goofy and humorous vibe to a heartwarming ambiance which felt oddly necessary once it occurred. He left us with a magazine interview he gave when he was at his worst state in his addiction which was arguably one of the funniest bits of the whole performance. But right before exiting the stage, he handed his tie to a young boy in the audience whom he had conversed with a few times throughout his routines. The authentic moment received a well earned affectionate applause from the audience.

Mulaney proves that his shows selling out in only a few hours after announcement is no mistake. His raw vulnerability and organic charm in his recent tour reach unfathomable levels for an already respected comedian. “From Scratch” may be one of his strongest projects yet.

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