Bo Burnham’s “Make Happy” accomplishes that and more

Bo Burnham is at the top of his game with his latest special Make Happy. It’s unbelievable at times to realize he’s but 25 years old. Burnham is one of a kind, mixing traditional stand-up, theater, and music into a batter of awesomeness. He can make the most hot button topics seem so trivial yet turn age old nursery rhymes into the most hot button topics. His tools for this juxtaposition range from sentimental piano based music to hardcore rapping and provocative monologues to simple one liner jokes.

Bo Burnham Make Happy review opens with Burnham waking up in what appears to be a hotel room, television still on from the night before, and a clown nose on with face paint. He then draws the curtains to greet the day. After leaving his hotel room, the journey begins. He heads out on foot through various terrain while computerized VO plays overtop the montage. During this time, we are instructed not to laugh and to not forget our problems which is the perfect setup for Burnham’s first strike.

Once arriving on stage, he quickly engages the audience with a song full of call and responses, tricking them into yelling things they shouldn’t. Sorry audience, too late. Quite clever and entertaining. Burnham’s brain can work on any level. Heady if he wants, simple-minded if called for. And he does all of this with complete comfort and control.

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