Don’t know who Amy Schumer is? Don’t be surprised; she doesn’t know who you are either, but whereas she doesn’t really have any reason to know who you are, you have been ample opportunities to be aware of her semi-greatness. Actress, stand up comedian, woman, Amy Schumer is like the white noise of showbusiness. Popping up once in a while and pricking a memory about seeing her in something else before but can’t quite remember from where. If this was a British actress, the chances that she once appeared in Larkrise To Candleford as ‘Plucky Apple Wench #1’ would be quite high. As lists of things go, having 30 Rock, Louie, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Girls on ‘Things What I Have Appeared In’ is a pretty good one. Imagine having actually spoke to Tina Fey. And for her to like you instead of just pretending to be Jenna Maroney.
Whereas Fey is one of the most ambitious and genre breaking creative forces out there, you can definitely feel the influence on Schumer’s comedy. It stems from an introspective look at her life, but hugely heightened, which is more like Sarah Silverman than Fey, but the honesty and brutality remains. Where Silverman’s humour is a bit like a sledgehammer to common decency, Schumer’s is just like knocking a panel pin into something that you’re not sure you should be talking about.
One of the main reasons that Inside Amy Schumer, the self titled part sketch show, part social examination, is so brilliant at what it does is because it’s a strong voice with a strong message. That message being: I’m a woman, society is doing all these terrible things to us and I want to show you how ridiculous this is. Whether it’s looking at the the disgusting way sexual abuse is reported in the Navy, or how women shame each other about what they eat when they should be giving each other tips on how to smuggle cake into a cinema, it’s brutally funny.
It’s not even just Schumer forcing her opinions on you, the show flicks between stand up, sketches and an on-the-street section to show that there are ordinary people, just like me and you, who agree with what she’s saying and have to live their lives under rules and regulations set by people who don’t really know what its like to live a real life. People are pretty good fun too. I don’t know if I would be that keen if a stranger with a camera crew came up to me and asked me if I’d “take a dick for America.” Though it is good that so many people would.
Unfortunately, some of the sketches don’t quite connect, and fall a bit flat compared to some more thought provoking and explicit ones, but in the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t make that much of a difference. It’s already been commissioned for a third series and Schumer is becoming more and more famous with every week. Trainwreck, her upcoming film starring Kristen Wiig’s GBF Bill Hader and Professional David Bowie impersonator Tilda Swinton, has been rewritten to suit more aspects of her real life. They changed an entire film’s script to suit her. That’s John Travolta level of fame. Also, its directed by Judd Apatow.
“But is she just another Kristen Wiig clone?” You might whine when you hear about her, and I do agree that there are some similarities, but Kristen Wiig or Melissa McCarthy would never approach comedy in the same way. Wiig is a polar opposite of male comedians because she’s a funny woman, and thrives on the audience’s sort of disbelief that they are saying the same type of things that men have been saying for years. Whereas Schumer punches you in the throat with her opinions about sex and how really rubbish life can be for women sometimes.
If you like your humour heavily laden with messages and things that make you want to start a revolution campaigning for Lady Rights, Inside Amy Schumer is for you. If, however, you like your humour about periods and sex, then this is still for you. Obviously you’re completely missing the point, but the heart want it wants, right? I’m sure there’s episodes of Top Gear you’ve missed out on.