Everyone knows that the cast of "Friends" is reassembling for HBO Max, which launches in May. Turns out Minnesota will also play a supporting role on the new streaming service.
The channel, in conjunction with Conan O'Brien's production company, recorded a stand-up special Saturday at the Varsity Theater in Minneapolis.
The featured comic, Beth Stelling, won't be collecting anywhere near $2 million, the reported payday for each of the beloved sitcom stars for their reunion. But the national exposure should build on the buzz she generated with her impressive work both in front and behind the camera on HBO's "Crashing."
In the first of two recorded sets, Stelling proved she belongs in the same class as Jen Kirkman and Nikki Glaser, comics who also specialize at skewering men that paint themselves as victims of the #MeToo movement.
"I don't why you're so scared," she said addressing those worried about being accused of sexual assault. "You're going to get away with it."
Stelling's material was razor sharp, but the evening suffered from the sideshow that comes with the TV circus.
Even avid fans had to be distracted by the cameras zipping up and down the aisles and the verbal notes, like warning audience members not to chew gum. The early show also lacked spontaneity and looseness, too risky when so much is riding on a performance.
Even with an opening act, local favorite Greg Coleman, the first show clocked in at less than 70 minutes. Watching the special, which doesn't have a premiere date or title yet, should be a kick. But you're bound to have an even better time catching Stelling next time she's in town, without the cameras in tow.