This past weekend I watched the first four episodes of Chelsea Handler’s new Netflix documentary series entitled, Chelsea Does. Each episode deals with a different subject matter – some more serious than others. For example, the first episode is called Chelsea Does Wedding’s, while a later episode is called, Chelsea Does Race.
I’ve never been a fan of Handler’s humor- In fact, I usually find it to be crass and offensive. She curses frequently and most of her jokes are centered around racial stereotypes and her own personal relationship with alcohol. So why did I spend nearly five hours of me weekend watching Handler grapple with some big ideas?
Here’s why: My friend showed me an interview of Handler that was featured in Variety Magazine- it discussed the first episode, on marriage, and how Handler overcame her first heartbreak. As a young woman (looking for love) any commentary on love entices me to read/watch more. Her comments on marriage intrigued me so I decided to give “Handler humor” another try…and to my surprise I adored each episode!
She deals with some challenging social topics such as racism and drugs in an accessible and often funny way. The mini documentaries only scratch the surface of these topics, but they successfully introduce concepts that many people find difficult to talk about…not to mention laugh about.
Perhaps Handler is making a bigger statement with this documentary series – by using the common language of comedy people can more comfortably discuss ideas that are not always easy to talk about.