Writing at the intersection of motherhood, feminism and my Latinidad

08 February 2010

Erica Watson Surfs into NYC on a New Wave of Black Comedy

This was originally posted on the AWEARNESS blog

Erica Watson is fat and she isn't afraid to tell you either. In fact, her one-woman show is called "Fat Bitch" and if you attend you'll learn a lot more than just how big she is. You'll learn about her 21st birthday party with a major stripper fail and how she thinks that being a cute fat chick is just too much pressure. "People are always telling me that if I just lost weight, I'd be sooo much prettier." I could see the eye roll from a dozen rows back when I saw the show in November.

Watson and other "new wave" black comics don't "relentlessly rip audience members who sit too close to the stage" the way one might see comedians do on Comedy Central. Now don't read that wrong: if you do sit close to Watson, she just might put you on the spot to ask if you like to date fatties. Her destruction of our fat/size-obsessed society is the foundation for the show, but she goes further...much further.

What I loved most about Watson's show was how feminist the show was, even without uttering the F-word. One segment was about how she had penis envy and the whipsmart conclusion is straight out of hundreds of women's studies dissertations. I laughed and chuckled my way through that bit and almost died laughing at how funny and spot-on her analysis was.

Her race analysis through a character "Super Mammy" was just as brilliant. I want to tell you everything funny about "Super Mammy" but it'll ruin your trip to her show. And if you are in New York, you're lucky because "Fat Bitch" is opening on February 11th.

Watson is brilliant and brilliantly funny. Not bad for a woman who flunked out of her first college. Yes, her analysis is amazing, but don't think that makes the show dull or academic - the attendees at the sold out preview show were hooting and hollering like nobody's business. She is one funny woman.

footnote: The best part of this review is that Erica loved it!

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