Review: Kevin Hart, “Zero F**ks Given,” on Netflix

Kevin Hart clearly cares a lot about what we think of him, despite the title of his indulgent performance he staged inside his home during COVID-19.

If you’re going to bother with making a comedy special in the middle of the pandemic, you could make at least one Quibi joke, especially if you starred in a Quibi series. Right? That was too much to expect.

Instead, Hart expresses his frustration and anger at us, at us, for how we treat famous people. “I don’t like what you guys have made me become,” he says. We made him what now? “I don’t like it. I’m no longer comfortable. You switched it on me.” The switch, he claims, is celebs used to be able to look down on the masses as the weirdos, and it has flipped to: “We’re the weird people now.” He complains about society freely becoming Big Brother snitches. He complains that celebrity is no longer the best job on the planet, as if he’s the first person to discover that money and fame don’t buy happiness, and jokes that he has to even treat everyone as potential rats, wondering if they’re wearing wires.

In reality, we used to know hardly anything about the real lives of celebrities and so they were always weird to us ordinaries. Before social media, we had to imagine how the rich and famous behaved when not onscreen. Now, they’re snitching on themselves, too!

Hart understands how the lap of luxury has tugged on his teen-aged children and spoiled them, and has pointed jokes to that effect.

But he eventually reverts back to petty beefs. The private school should put papa Hart on more of a pedestal. Never mind that in 2020, nobody’s schooling is remotely normal at all because it’s mostly remote, so any jokes about school fairs or events or anything normal at all feels absolutely abnormal to hear now. Hart also goes into detail about how he has spoiled his kids with private planes and other perks such as cutting the line at every ride. His only admonishment to his children? Don’t look at the people in line. His only admission afterward? This joke’s true target is his ex-wife, who cannot compete with Hart’s privileges of fame and fortune.

“These jokes are gonna come with a price tag attached to them!” he says, meaning he’ll pay off his ex with a Tesla or some trinket.

And we thought Ellen DeGeneres was out of touch.

Hart cannot even help himself, tacking on an extra ending, where his wife reassures him that the previous hour was all just a nightmare. A nightmare of being so rich and famous you can film a Netflix special inside your dream home.

Read my full review in 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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