Tig Notaro in "Hello Again" Source: Screencap/Amazon/YouTube

Review: Tig Notaro's 'Hello Again' Makes a Case for Brevity

Kilian Melloy READ TIME: 2 MIN.

Perhaps you had to be there in the Brooklyn venue where lesbian comic Tig Notaro filmed her new comedy special, "Hello Again," for Amazon Prime, but after a strong first half the show's cheerfully dour greeting turned into a too-long goodbye.

Notaro mines familiar sources that comics have long turned to for material: family (her wife, her kids, her mother), air travel, issues around aging, and sexuality. Notaro's jokes and affect align to create effective comedy, and it's pure gold when she describes a middle-of-the-night health crisis that came with a silver lining in the form of a fireman right out of a sexy firefighters' calendar. "I get it now!" Notaro marvels as she recounts being swept up in arms that bulge with muscle; "You think you're shocked?"

Other moments take a bit more work, as when Notaro relates lengthy conversations she's had in which she didn't hear the other person properly and made wildly inappropriate responses to what they said. These jokes work... if you're willing to hear the same stories twice over, once from Notaro's befuddled perspective and once from a more objective perspective. A joke involving Nicole Kidman's height is especially labored, and that same leaden sense of repetition brings down a bit about a gibberish text message Notaro sent in a post-surgery fog of painkillers to which she turned out to be allergic.

But the show more or less falls apart with the entrance of a white baby grand piano; the upshot is that Notaro doesn't know how to play or sing, but she's going to do so anyway. She does make a hilarious, and true, observation that, far from being limiting, this lack of know-how frees her to do anything. A one-note gag collapses as Notaro tries to make a symphony out of it, and the fact that it's the show's last act makes it a double let-down.

Still, the first half is worth tuning in for, so don't feel bad about having a laugh while the laughs are good and then drifting away.

"Hello Again" is streaming now on Amazon Prime.

by Kilian Melloy , EDGE Staff Reporter

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.

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