1 view 2 comments

Donald Glover: Weirdo

by on April 9, 2012
 

I have been a fan of Donald Glover for many years. In high school, it was his sketch group that my friends and I watched endlessly. Some of his sketches, like “Girls Are Not to Be Trusted,” remain among my favorite things on YouTube. From there, Glover wrote for “30 Rock” before deciding to leave that staff and pursue acting. He then became one of the leads on (in my opinion) the best comedy on the air, “Community.” He has also been in movies, started a hugely successful rap career and still manages to have time for stand-up comedy.

“Weirdo” is his first one-hour stand-up special and it’s yet another impressive addition to his career. Glover has natural charisma and storytelling skills. It’s rare to see a level of confidence for someone at this stage in his career. People typically like to put Glover into a level of geek humor, but his strength is looking at the odd moments of his personal life. It would be easy to talk about his career and fame, but Glover focuses on the odder moments of his childhood.

In Atlanta as a child, his house was filled with foster children because his parents loved to have a house for that. There is a lot of great material looking at how his parents raised him, especially as the children worked so hard to get sugary cereal for breakfast or tried to circumvent the boredom of having to go to The Home Depot.

There are also a lot of looks at racism throughout his life. Glover approaches it not from a stance of anger but confusion. When they announced they were going to reboot “Spider-Man,” there was an awesome Internet campaign to try and cast Donald Glover as the masked hero. The role ultimately went to Andrew Garfield, but before that, there was a cruel response to the campaign demanding that Spider-Man cannot be black. The way Glover responds to the whole thing makes for some great comedy.

With his comedy and his music, Glover really wants to express himself. He doesn’t only tell stories that will make him look good, he focuses on the things that are really bothering him. That emotional element is what makes this more than just really good jokes on a stage.

The DVD includes the unedited special but also has a surprisingly open interview with Glover. For 35 minutes, he is explicit about aspects of his life, the cities he’s lived in and where he is now. For Glover fans, this is really great. Then he has a five-minute tour of his New York, where he shows the places from his life, including the building where he lost his virginity. The only problem with that tour is the use of clips from his interview as transitions; they really should have left those small segments out so they could be used just for that feature.

Special: 4 Yaps
Extras: 4 Yaps