I settled in on the couch for a nice quiet Mother’s Day Sunday. My family left me alone; best gift ever! Had my requisite vodka (I don’t drink wine anymore; I have teenagers), cake and poised myself to search through Netflix, when right at the top of my home screen was Ali Wong’s new stand up comedy special, Hard Knock Wife. Having seen Ali on Ellen just a few weeks prior and remembering that she had me raucously laughing the entire interview, I figured, this just has to be worth watching. As Wu-Tang starts booming for her intro, I’m already bopping my head. Out comes this diminutive Asian woman in a fetching leopard dress, highlighting her very pregnant belly, with her hair in a half up bun at the top of her head and donning over-sized cat’s eye spectacles.
For many reasons, besides the obvious, she immediately goes in on motherhood and her first pregnancy. The uninhibited truth of her jokes is validating to every mom out there that is honest with herself about how hard & unpleasant being a mom can be sometimes. There were points in the routine that this woman had me grabbing tissues to wipe away the tears that began to stream from my face in hilarity. Wong goes in on pregnancy, work, marriage, breastfeeding, kids, family, gender double standards, career, culture, fame and the challenges of being a woman and getting it all done! She is also an aggressive advocate for maternity leave which she mentions several times, at an elevated volume & hostile tone, much to the audience’s pleasure.
Her frequent amusing tone further adds to her humor as she mimics speaking to people slowly & deliberately like they are too dumb to understand what she is saying. Her delivery is immaculately mirthful & so unapologetically Wong. Her fiery outbursts are impertinent and riotous while her animated facial and body movements just add to the well rounded hilarity of the show. She had me rolling off the couch in giggles repeatedly throughout particularly when she roasts her own nipples and her best friend’s va-jay-jay.
Ms. Wong was the perfect topper to my Mother’s Day. Thanks Ali & Netflix for bringing me so much laughter on a day when moms need joy & dopamine releases the most. If you are a mom, you will relate but I think there are jokes that anyone would find humor in. Laughter is one of the few renewable resources that we have and its benefits are many. Ali Wong gives you a healthy, heaping dose of it.