Like everything else, Diwali will be different this year. While the curve has begun to flatten in some parts of the country, coronavirus continues to spread through communities and families—making it imperative that we follow social distancing norms and stay home as far as possible. That’s a major bummer, but don’t worry!
We’re here to save Diwali—one laugh at a time. So turn on your mirchi lights, stuff your faces with mithai and watch any one (or all) of these completely clean, wholesome, and family-friendly comedy specials with your family and loved ones. The taash parties will still be there next year and you want to take every opportunity for a good laugh in 2020.
Amit Tandon: Family Tandoncies
Mining his family for material, Amit Tandon returned to Netflix with Family Tandoncies earlier this year. With the distinction of being the streaming platform’s first-ever Hindi special, Tandon’s one-hour long show is a slice-of-married-life which is his forte but—given his knack for observational humour—never gets old. In Family Tandoncies, the comedian (popularly known as ‘the married guy’) explores how romance evolves in long-term marriages, the pitfalls of parenting, and the dynamics of international family vacations, making it a no-brainer when it comes to family-friendly comedy content this Diwali.
Kenny Sebastian: The Most Interesting Person In The Room
A paavam special for a paavam occasion, Kenny Sebastian’s first Netflix special (released three years after Don’t Be That Guy on Prime Video) is a Kenny Sebastian extravaganza. Yes, he sings. Yes, there are impressions. Yes to the guitar and yes, he keeps the jokes coming. One of the country’s best-known English comics, there’s a good chance your parents already know who Sebastian is but, if not, this is as good a time as any to get acquainted—and The Most Interesting Person In The Room is a solid refresher on the brand that Sebastian has become.
Kanan Gill: Yours Sincerely
Previously toured as Teetar, Kanan Gill’s newest special Yours Sincerely won the comedian rave reviews when it released mid-lockdown in April. An ode to growing up (in ways your younger self could never have imagined), the seventy-minute special does three things well. It showcases Gill’s exceptional way with words, demonstrates his mastery of the observational style, and, most importantly, evokes a sense of nostalgia that is generation-agnostic—making it perfect for watching with the family.
Neeti Palta: Almost Sanskari
In this very personal special, Neeti Palta attempts to decode the inner workings of a comic’s mind. Almost Sanskaari features relatable-max jokes about her non-traditional upbringing by her mother and Army father, familial safe sex discussions, marriage, and other societal expectations that she happily fails to meet.
Naveen Richard: Relatively Relatable
Performed in Bengaluru and released on Prime Video this March, Naveen Richard’s Relatively Relatable is full of…well, relatively relatable jokes about fridges, surprise birthday parties, cockroaches, toothpaste, and mistakes. Richard’s alter-ego, the bespectacled Xavier Pandian with an explosive personality, makes a guest appearance at the halfway mark and goes on to steal the show—which is not to say Richard as himself is any less compelling. An incredibly easy watch, Relatively Relatable will have you smiling from start to finish.
Russell Peters: Deported
Filmed over two nights at the NSCI in Mumbai, Russell Peter’s Deported toured in over 30 countries over a year and a half before he brought it back home to be recorded for Prime Video. In case you missed it, tickets were priced at up to Rs. 7,500 and seats ran out faster than you could say “somebody gonna get hurt real bad”. After all, Russell Peters (arguably) put India on the global stand-up comedy map. Deported is about Peters’ experiences growing up as an Indian man, born in Canada, living in Trump’s America—which might be nice to watch given that Trump’s America is about to be a thing of the past.
Jerry Seinfeld: 23 Hours To Kill
A love for Jerry Seinfeld’s brand of ‘comfort food comedy’ transcends generations; chances are your parents love the American standup artist just as much as you do. His newest Netflix special is squeaky clean; the word ‘sex’ is used exactly one time and Seinfeld chooses PG-13 topics to poke fun at—from buffets to small talk and marriages to golfing dads. This may well be the only comedy special that’s suitable for ages 7 and above so you can confidently press ‘play’ without worrying about sinister sideways glances from the ‘rents.