Is Netflix saturating the comedy industry?


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Jamison Joyce, Staff Writer

Netflix, which began as a DVD rental store has grown into a TV and movie streaming service with 167 million subscribers worldwide. The company has used their various stand-up comedy specials, featuring famous comedians, such as Dave Chappelle, Eddie Murphy and Bill Burr, to gain many of these subscribers. 

On paper, this sounds like any comedy fan’s dream, but as Netflix mass-produces specials, fans and comedians alike can both agree that the enjoyment is dying.

By over-releasing stand-up specials, Netflix has over saturated the comedy industry. Comedian Dave Chappelle has released four stand-up specials on Netflix. Although none of them are flat-out unenjoyable, they are by no means his best work and they are making his discography tired. 

They have done this with numerous other comedians as well,Bo Burnham, Kevin Hart and Mike Epps have multiple original stand-up shows on the site.

They show no signs of slowing down and have many upcoming shows planned to release on the site in the future. In 2020 alone, Netflix has already released eight original stand-up shows. Additionally, they have announced three upcoming shows set to release in March alone. Two of these originals are set to be stand-up series, each episode spanning 30 minutes to an hour.

Many big figures in the industry also believe that Netflix has been going overboard. Comedian Andy Kindler has made jokes in the past that poke fun at the absurd pace that Netflix was releasing stand-up.

 Comedian Sam Morril believes that since he is not featured in a Netflix special, it makes him seem irrelevant in the industry. He also believes the Netflix specials generally are not of very good quality and that it takes fame to land a special, not comedic skill.

Stand-up comedy will always be enjoyable, but one can be bored by something if presented with it too much. The overall entertainment value is gone and as they continue to be rapidly produced, they become less original and less funny. 

Netflix should not completely stop releasing these specials, but the frequency at which they are released should decrease.


Contact Jamison Joyce at [email protected]