Review: Russell Howard, “Recalibrate” on Netflix

Russell Howard is a big TV star in Britain, but you’d only know him in America if you’re an ex-pat or if you’re an avid watcher of the late-night telly. In that case, you’d have seen him pop up from time to time, once on Conan, once on The Tonight Show, and once on The Late Late Show, as well as appearances on @midnight.

But his stand-up style easily translates across the pond, and it helps that the socio-political scene is as much of a mess in the UK as it is right now in the US of A.

As I write in my review of Russell Howard: Recalibrate, he titles this performance after a recurring case he makes to reboot the societal system:

While Howard gives mention to widespread “division and bullshit and bigots,” he’d much rather refocus us all on love and laughter and rainbows — well, symbolic ones, anyhow, pointing out he chose to record his special in Brighton during Gay Pride celebrations to join in a loving spirit. After all, as he says earlier in the performance: “I think that’s all we can do: Giggle at the madness of the world. Every day you switch on the news. The news in this country is just: Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, raining. This is the news.”

Howard, clearly a Star Wars fan from his multiple references to the franchise, doesn’t talk in terms of the Force, instead choosing to speak out about the need for wonder to balance out the woes of the world. “We’re all a bit frazzled. All a bit mad.”

Read my full review on Decider.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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