Look, there’s a lot to unpack in this. First, you should know that “Netflix is a Joke” is not a criticism, but is actually the name Netflix has chosen for its comedy strand. I think. I mean, they seem to be owning the phrase so they certainly don’t view it as an insult. Second, “Netflix is a Joke” has just launched its very own original social series, which you can watch on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (but not, apparently, on Netflix. Huh.). And finally, there’s the series itself: It’s called Dressing Funny with Tan France, and involves Queer Eye’s fashion guru styling a bunch of comedians you know and love, including Nick Kroll, Ali Wong, Miranda Sings, Tina Fey, Rachel Dratch, and Pete Davidson. Here’s the trailer!
Now, I’d be willing to bet actual singles of dollars on the fact that this show sprang from the sheer magic of the video France did with Hasan Minhaj last fall, to promote the launch of Patriot Act. And even if this show isn’t a spin-off of that video, it still remains the benchmark for all that this new series could achieve.
So, how is it stacking up so far? Well, here’s the first episode for you, where France tries to make John Mulaney look less like a dad and more “f*ckable”:
Now, Kristy and I have spent a lot of time and energy trying to wrap our heads around the (terrible) fashion decisions on display in this episode. Like, do they not see how those henley buttons clash with the buttons on the double-breasted suit? Do they realize that suit makes Mulaney look like a coke dealer from Miami Vice? Has any actual human person ever strapped a fanny pack across their chest like Rambo? Why do none of the clothes seem to fit? Why skinny jeans? WHY SKINNY JEANS?!
Ahem. The thing is, we all know Tan France is better than this. So my conclusion is that the title, Dressing Funny, isn’t just a clever witticism about him dressing funny people. It’s literal. He’s dressing people funnily. And that works for me! The success, of course, will rely on how well the comedians play along with these clown get-ups. Predictably, Mulaney faces it all with dry humor and a smirk. And while he still doesn’t quite achieve Minhaj-levels of charm here, he’s still super cute (especially when he’s getting insulted). The point is, I’ll definitely check back in for future episodes. But not on Facebook, because I’m not a monster. I’ll watch my short-form content on YouTube, thank you very much Netflix.