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Best Comedy Stand Up Specials On Amazon Prime Right Now


Many of the best stand-up comedy specials of all time are currently streaming on Amazon Prime. Although Netflix and HBO are more well-known for their original stand-up content, Amazon Prime hosts a wealth of comedy specials both new and old, with even more available at an additional cost.

While stand-up comedy has existed for quite some time, the rise of streaming platforms has led to a significant increase in attention paid to the format. While the Amazon Prime video library isn’t as known for original stand-up, the streamer has released more than 30 exclusive specials since 2017. Also among their inventory of stand-up comedy offerings, however, are specials that actually originally premiered on Netflix and HBO, as well as on Showtime, the UK’s Channel Four, and other outlets.

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Amazon Prime’s comedy specials go back decades and include award-winning specials and both early and final performances from some of the most iconic comedians of all time. With that in mind, here is a look at some of the best performances in stand-up comedy that are available as part of an Amazon Prime subscription.

Kevin Smith: Silent, But Deadly (2018)


Kevin Smith in Silent But Deadly

Silent, But Deadly is the sixth solo stand-up comedy special from View Askewniverse creator Kevin Smith. While most of Smith’s other specials, including those done in tandem with Clerks costar Jason Mewes, are in a more informal Q&A format, Silent, But Deadly is Smith’s most true-to-form special, with prepared stories and anecdotes about his family and the state of his career. The special is named in reference to the non-fatal heart attack that Smith suffered moments after the taping finished, prompting a significant change in the filmmaker’s lifestyle and making it his most meaningful special to date.


Iliza Shlesinger: War Paint (2013)


Iliza Shlesinger in War Paint

War Paint is the first full-length stand-up comedy special from Spenser Confidential star and Dollface guest star Iliza Shlesinger. She appeared on the reality competition series Last Comic Standing in 2008, ultimately beating out other notable stand-up comics such as Michelle Buteau and Christina Pazsitzky (a.k.a. Christina P.) for the season’s top spot. Shlesinger’s bold delivery, commitment to characters, and thoughtful, well-crafted routines define her comedic style, which she continued to cultivate in her subsequent four Netflix stand-up comedy specials.

Tom Segura: Completely Normal (2014)


Tom Segura in Completely Normal

Tom Segura has deeply entrenched himself in the world of comedy for the better part of the last two decades, rubbing elbows with some of today’s most popular stand-up comics and even marrying fellow brash comedian Christina Pazsitzky (of Midnight Gospel)Completely Normal is the first full-length stand-up comedy special from the Your Mom’s House podcaster, and it exemplifies the early stages of the comedic style that would propel Segura to mainstream success. His deadpan delivery and characteristic nonchalance are on display in the special, which would famously garner the attention of legendary former boxer Mike Tyson.


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Sebastian Maniscalco: Aren’t You Embarrassed? (2014)


Sebastian Maniscalco in Aren’t You Embarassed?

Aren’t You Embarrassed? is the third full-length stand-up special from Italian-American comedian Sebastian Maniscalco. He has dominated the comedy scene for more than a decade, releasing five full-length stand-up specials and his memoir, Stay Hungry, all within the span of the last 13 years, while also appearing in massive films like Green Book and Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman. His matter-of-fact style of storytelling and accentuated mannerisms make him an engaging performer, as displayed in his Aren’t You Embarrassed? special.


George Carlin: Life Is Worth Losing (2005)


George Carlin in Life is Worth Losing

Life is Worth Losing is the 13th special George Carlin filmed for HBO since his first back in 1977. Carlin’s legendary career began in the late 1950s with a stint as a radio DJ, starting him down a path that would see him eventually host the pilot episode of Saturday Night Live in 1975. The 68-year-old Carlin is in peak form in Life is Worth Losing, making use of his impressive vocabulary and characteristic eloquence in one of the best performances of his career.

Todd Barry: The Crowd Work Tour (2014)


Todd Barry in The Crowd Work Tour

The Crowd Work Tour is the second full-length special from comedian’s comedian Todd Barry. Though he is well-respected within the comedy community, Barry has enjoyed rather moderate mainstream success, voicing a recurring character in the animated series Bob’s Burgers and appearing briefly in HBO’s Flight of the Conchords as well as the 2008 film The Wrestler. The Crowd Work Tour is a showcase of Barry’s wit and comedic talents, relying solely on his audiences to provide him with the basis for his material.


Maria Bamford: Weakness Is The Brand (2020)


Maria Bamford in Weakness is the Brand

Weakness is the Brand is the fourth full-length special from Lady Dynamite creator Maria Bamford. Bamford’s unique vocal inflection and distinctive character work have led her to a rather fruitful career in voice acting, appearing in hugely popular animated series as various characters in Big Mouth and Adventure Time. Weakness is the Brand is a mix of Bamford’s characteristic voice work and sarcastic anecdotes interspersed between more vulnerable reflections on her mental health, making it perhaps her most personal comedy special to date.

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Eddie Izzard: Dress To Kill (1999)


Eddie Izzard in Dress to Kill

Dress to Kill is the fifth full-length special from prominent British comedian and Hannibal co-star Eddie Izzard. The show is named in reference to Izzard’s tendency to present as female while onstage, advocating for trans rights since the early ‘90s and switching exclusively to she/her pronouns in 2020. Izzard’s refined and eloquent comedic style as seen in Dress to Kill has led to a rather successful career in film and television, and her message of logic and love makes her stand out amidst the often angry and sometimes cruel world of standup comedy.


Bill Hicks: Revelations (1993)


Bill Hicks in Revelations

Revelations is the fourth and final full-length stand-up special from prolific comedian Bill Hicks, who is set to be the subject of an upcoming biopic from Richard Linklater. Hicks quickly rose to prominence following the release of his first taped special, Dangerous, in 1990, lifting him from relative obscurity and making him one of America’s most sought-after comics until his death in 1994. Despite his intentionally abrasive style, Hicks’ insightful social and political commentary paired with outlandish stories from his troubled past made him one of the most influential comedians of his era, which can be plainly seen in what would be his last taped performance.

George Carlin…It’s Bad For Ya! (2008)


George Carlin in It’s Bad For Ya!

George Carlin…It’s Bad For Ya! is the 14th and final full-length special the late performer recorded for HBO. The 71-year-old comedian recorded the special in March of 2008 before dying of heart failure just three months later. Carlin delivers some of the most well-crafted and eloquent riffs of his career, making It’s Bad For Ya! not only the best stand-up special streaming on Amazon Prime right now but one of the best of all time. His iconic style and unparalleled tenacity have posthumously inspired new generations of comics, landing him comfortably atop most lists of the greatest comedians in history.


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