Comedy Special Review: John Mulaney moves on in a triumphant Comeback special

You can tell why two broadcast networks and no less an esteemed comedy maven as Lorne Michaels thought John Mulaney should be a TV star. The stand-up comedian is great on camera, as he repeatedly demonstrates in his new hour-long special, The Comeback Kid. His delivery has a disarming physicality, whether he’s emphasizing a point by talking with his hands or shimmying his shoulders to illustrate a real estate agent’s “fun mom” energy. It’s a gestural style that’s visible from the very last rows of the Chicago Theater—the site of The Comeback Kid‘s taping—but one that translates naturally to Netflix. He’s onstage at a storied venue, whose walls have been marked by Kanye West, Prince, and Sammy Davis Jr. (as seen in The Comeback Kid‘s backstage cold open), but there’s an intimacy to the way he relates an anecdote. It …

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