a A year after the release of his Netflix in-house movie — by all accounts one of the most iconic comedies of our time — Bo Burnham released an hour-long excerpt from this twisted insurance masterpiece. As Bo himself might sing, “Look, I ground you!” Of course he did: How about Inside made you think he could leave this stuff alone?
If the Russian Doll scene is from the original, where Burnham comments on footage from the previous scene (then on The scene, then continue The scene) wasn’t repetitive enough for you, how about a succinct YouTube video with parody banner ads in the inner topic? Or a post-show chat from the CEO of Inside Studios (played by you-know-who) that presents Burnham’s Marvel-like show Inside Cinematic Universe?
Lag! When will Burnham’s comedy, and this particular one in particular, stop eating itself? Probably never – which is fine for me if the quality remains high. Yes, some of these snippets are just for the nerd inside: Burnham rehearses songs from the show or rehearsals and ignores lighting effects. But some materials shine as brightly as the best original. There’s a satirical podcast parodying a certain kind of alpha, PC bait standup (“we’re two gossip-talking comedians with no filter”). There’s a very funny song about the insignificant trifles of a long-term relationship (“You owe me a dumpling or an equivalent dumpling”), and another–more in that sweet, indescribably funny feeling–about a chicken who dares to chase after dreams, at least to a crowded road.
It’s a measure of the quality of Inside 1.0 that this stuff can end up on the cutting room floor. However, there are moments when one can’t help but doubt the claim that all of this material was created between March 2020 and May 2021. (The original show wasn’t entirely pure in the claims it made for itself.) In a hilarious skit, the in-house creative team is interviewed (Eight Different Bo Burnhams) by, um, Bo Burnham on the success of the special. Can this really be photographed? Before The inside has a huge impact? Maybe so. It’s ultimately a satire of the absurdity of celebrity interviews, with a choice question, about the lack of diversity in Inside, misrepresenting both the Awakening and the scant way in which the status quo embraces change.
While cleverly grouped, there is no point in pretending that the output is as satisfying or coherent as within itself: it is not. But there are a lot of exciting things about this version, not the least of which is the cool trick it uses to greet the (usually distasteful) countdown icon in the corner of a YouTube video that says “View at 5”. Here he points to the arrival of a totally perfect satirical commercial where Burnham sings the joys of jeans, being you or a peanut butter sandwich.
Just when the rest of us dare to dream that the worst of Covid may be behind us, perhaps the most striking thing about The Inside Outtakes is what it means about the origin. Inside, it wasn’t just about shutdowns (it’s much clearer now), it was about getting entangled in 2021, getting entangled in everything clever, postmodern infotainment circulation, and falling into the trap of Bo Burnham and Bo Burnham’s selfishness. head. This is a place Burnham, at least, won’t be able to escape – see this other pasta, a year later, with the same locked and wacky content. According to his iconic image of Burnham Christ, this particular immortal and stunning is a cross that Burnham built for himself and then nailed himself to. From now on, it’ll be cool to see if – and the rest of us – he can walk away from him.