Amy Schumer Live at the Apollo Review: Showing her secret bits

Chad White
Loves: A woman with a good personality
Likes: Amy Schumer and her strong poise
Dislikes: Too much blue comedy
Hates: Applause breaks

My name is Amy and I’m at the Apollo

Before I start this review, I want to get a few things out of the way: a). I think Amy is a wonderful talent and I love everything about her; b). I endorse feminism and being different and the things that they come with; c). there can be too much of a good thing. Now with all of that said, they will be fully addressed later, let’s get on with this. Amy Schumer is hot stuff from the world of television to film and her comfy seat in standup comedy. It’s obvious she’s a powerhouse. This is evident as she takes the stage to Nicki Minaj’s “Bees in the Trap.” We do, however, get a glimpse at Schumer’s nervous side when a front following camera catching her reactions finds the comedienne a little shaken. It’s a beautiful moment of humanity. Seriously, what kind of human being wouldn’t be afraid of taking on the Apollo?

Schumer’s entrance with a bottle of white wine (or champagne; I couldn’t tell) only adds to the reality that she is one of the best comics right now. Adding to that is her request for a standing ovation along with three separate applause breaks (which I hate. It’s a personal thing). Much like Tig Notaro, Schumer suggests heavily that she didn’t know it was coming. The humbleness, the immediate strong willed attitude and other factors make up Schumer’s tough but approachable personality. Upfront Amy is vulgar and disgusting as she tells a dirty joke. The audience is immediately on board. She begins with her looks recalling that people told her she was too pretty for Buffalo and she could move to L.A. Once arriving, she found herself to be the bottom rung. But the self deprecation doesn’t stop there as the comedienne moves onto talking about her movie, Trainwreck, and the process it took in creating it.

Joke construction is very organic. Schumer’s words flow with relative ease as she transitions from training for the movie to eating a lot to trying to obtain a late in life eating disorder then back to the movie. Not many comedians are able to have such a natural way of speaking. Her vocabulary is so natural that she’s able to create new terms on the spot like “secret bits,” “puss,” and “deep-dick” (that last one was used as a verb by the way). Schumer also talks about herself and things she dislikes such as being labeled a sex comic -- possibly due to her being a female coupled with the subject matter which she speaks of. And she’s also quite frank which can be seen when she makes jokes about male semen on Oprah and Michelle Obama.

But therein lays one of my biggest issues with Schumer: the intense vulgarity. If the joke isn’t about her weight or low self-worth, it’s about sex or dicks or whatever. Schumer has a propensity to go off the handle almost too much. She says in the special that if a man told these jokes, they’re funny (not verbatim but you get the point) and if she tells them, then she’s a “sex comic.” The thing is if anyone tells as many sex jokes she does, then they’d be labeled a sex comic no matter the gender. It’s okay for her to talk about these things but there’s got to be a line. When you boil down her characteristics as a comic, she’s essentially all sex jokes or self-deprecating humor. It would’ve been nice to see her branch out into other styles of joking. There are better ways to endorse your ideas onto a crowd. I’d like to see her grow up just a bit.

Should you watch Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo?

Amy Schumer is a big name right now. She will be for years to come. Her standup is immediately unique with nuances of top notch writing covered in confident performing goodness. At the same time, I want to see her comedy evolve from this vulgar life into one-of-a-kind observations. I didn’t even get to mention Chris Rock’s directing. In short: it was great and unobtrusive. He was able to make the large theater feel homely. And the crowdwork bit near the end went horribly wrong in a fantastical way. Give this one a go.