My gut instinct was to write a review based on his title: This is what he does.
But Gary Owen’s 2019 special, which premiered on Showtime in September, isn’t about what he does, as much about what other comedians have done, and how he not only hasn’t done those things, but also is faking it if you look at his social media as the truth. Hence, the hash-tagged title. Owen has made his career based on being the one white comedy friend to Black audiences. Take this clip, for example, which juxtaposes Roseanne with him.
Owen also defends Kevin Hart plenty in this hour (perhaps as much for business reasons as much as friendship ones), and explains how he tried to explain show business to Mo’Nique.
“Here’s the thing about the entertainment business, man. When you ain’t in movies like you think, or TV shows like you think, your brain starts playing tricks on you. You start thinking there’s a conspiracy against me. People don’t like me anymore. That’s really not the case. Because you never know when your name’s coming up behind closed doors for a movie or a TV show.”
As I wrote in Decider:
After he tried to point that out to Mo’Nique via Instagram, however, Owen found himself dealing with backlash online for days. On the bright side, that’s where he found he loved being insulted as “white cracker bread.”
When he’s not convincing you to call him that now on the regular, Owen is jokingly advising us on how we all can live our best lives on social media. By faking it. Why pay for bottle service at nightclubs or private jets, when you can simply pose for pics near them? When you see him use the hashtag #DoinWhatIDo? “That is code for me lying.”
Owen doesn’t seem to mind one way or the other whether you believe him or roast him, so long as you keep showing up for him.