Review: Ali Wong – Baby Cobra
In her Netflix special Baby Cobra Ali Wong is fierce, relatable, and there is no doubt that she is indeed ‘the real boss’. She’s raunchy and explicit, made all the more comical by playing out vulgar content with her demurely dressed, 7.5 months pregnant body. Wong’s content is obscene, irreverent, and liberating; she has the entire audience in stiches about sex, Asian stereotypes, and views that challenge modern feminism. Wong’s destabilising humour lets the audience relax, and unlike a lot of comics who hit at least one jarring joke when working with divisive content, Wong’s delivery is faultless.
Wong challenges modern feminism; she’s ready for an early retirement, insisting she doesn’t want to ‘lean in’, she wants to lie down. She boasts that she’s made her husband’s lunch every day since they’ve been together. Just when the feminist in you might be starting to cry, she reminds us it’s not out of the goodness of her heart, but ‘I don’t wanna work anymore!’ She has strategically fed him to make him dependent on her, as part of her elaborate plan to ‘trap his ass’. This theme runs throughout Wong’s show; with her satirically rejecting modern feminism in one breath but then proving she still runs her own show in the next.
Challenging the expectations of women, Wong talks about her time as a ‘prostate conqueror’. She remarks at how most men worry that if they like it, they might be gay. In true Wong form, she subtly drops this wonderful critique of societal conditioning, with a devilish, long smile out into the audience, saying: ‘and I like that fear’.
Wong’s unashamed use of physicality was a huge highlight of her show. She mentions that you never see female comics perform pregnant (and suggests this is because they never get pregnant), and you rarely see female comics embrace the kind of physical humour that Wong does. It seems fitting that Wong’s physical style of comedy flies in the face of gender norms as much as her content does.
She finishes her show explaining the reason she’s performing 7.5 months pregnant – her dear Harvard graduate husband was $70k in debt… until she paid it off. She jokes, wide-eyed, that he was in fact the one who trapped her, and if she doesn’t work, they die! This is good news for us, as we can expect more Ali Wong greatness in the future!
Ali Wong’s special Baby Cobra is streaming on Netflix now.