While Pete Davidson was known in the comedy circles due to his stand up work as well as his being a cast member of television’s Saturday Night Live his recognizability quotient shot up tenfold when he started dating, then became engaged to and finally broke up with pop superstar Ariana Grande. All eyes seemed to be on the New Jersey native. That had both bad and good effects on him and his career.
Part of the good side was that plenty of attention was paid to the release of his stand up special on Netflix, Pete Davidson: Alive from New York. It is an intimate stand-up show which was filmed live in New York City at the Gramercy Theatre. The set lasts an economic 49 minutes and he gets right into it off the hop.
To be honest I don’t think this special shows the best of Pete Davidson. I know part of his schtick is his awkward geekiness despite what you might think due to all his tattoos and foul language, but there was just too much of him leaning on that here. In all honesty there is probably only half of the time being material while the other half is mumbling and awkwardness. He seemed a little distracted at times as well. Though this was probably not the best time of his life in regards to his mental health so can excuse it a little.
What I do appreciate about him as a comedian is his willingness to be honest or poke fun at himself. Not only does he have a unique way of looking at things but while sharing he makes those listening feel less alone. Twofold!
At several points during the short set I almost felt embarrassed for him. Like he knew things were not going well and almost kinda gave up. Makes me wonder why he released this? I vacillated between wondering whether he could even recognize this due to the head space he was in or if it was a form of self punishment? Whatever the answer is it makes for awkward watching in patches.
You do see the talent. In small flashes. You see the sharp comedic mind and way he is able to make funny how he thinks or presents things. This was his first Netflix stand up special. I am sure it won’t be his last but do hope he is in better shape for the next one.